Abelardo Fernandez has been sacked by Espanyol after the team’s poor results.
Rufete who is the club’s sporting director, will take over until the end of the season.
Fernadez who is 50year old is the third manage they have fired since Rubi left the club for Real Betis last summer. Ex-B team coach David Gallego was shown the way out in October and his replacement, Pablo Machin, was also replaced in December.
Following the resumption of the league after it was suspended due to the covid 19 pandemic, Espanyol returned to action with a 2-0 win over Alaves and a goalless draw way at Getafe, where they finished the game with 10 men.
However, a home defeat to Levante last week, followed by Thursday’s 1-0 loss at Betis has seen the club take drastic action as they desperately fight to save their top-flight status.
“Espanyol have taken the decision to relieve Abelardo from his responsibilities as first-team coach,” a statement read on Saturday. “The decision comes on the back of recent performances and with a desire to avoid relegation.
The rest of the coaching members of the coaching team, Tomas Hervas and Inkai Tejada, have also been released. Abelardo joined the club in December 2019 and has been in charge for 17 games.
Espanyol are grateful to Abelardo and his coaching team for their implication during the months they were in charge and wish them success in the future, both personally and professionally.” The club said on their official website.”
With seven games to go, Espanyol are eight points behind Eibar, who are fourth bottom, and face a daunting run-in.
They will also have to play away at local rivals Barcelona and Valencia before the season ends.
However, their home games against relegation rivals Leganes, Eibar and, on the final day of the season, Celta Vigo may be their life line.
They finished seventh last season and qualified for the Europa League, Espanyol have never recovered from the loss of Rubi, who left the club, along with striker Borja Iglesias, for Betis in the summer.
Things did not go much better for Rubi in Betis as he was sacked last week after losing 1-0 to Athletic Bilbao with Betis in the bottom half of the table.