Escriba given the boot by Villarreal

Fran Escriba

Fran Escriba has paid the price for a disappointing start to the new La Liga season after he was sacked as head coach by Villarreal on Monday.

The Spaniard lasted just over 13 months at the helm, having been appointed to the role in August 2016 after losing his job at Getafe in April that same year.

The Yellow Submarine finished just five points outside the Champions League places in fifth position last term under Escriba’s guidance, as they qualified for the Europa League.

But the club decided to act after suffering a heavy 4-0 defeat to his former employers on Sunday – their third loss in six top-flight outings.

Josep Alcacer and Jose Mascaros have joined Escriba on the chopping block, and Villarreal have moved swiftly to replace him with Javi Calleja, who spent seven seasons with the club as a player between 1999 and 2006.

Calleja has moved through the ranks as a coach at Villarreal, taking charge of their youth and B teams before graduating to the big leagues.