Santos sack coach Ramalho

Rio de Janeiro, June 1 (IANS) Santos have sacked coach Muricy Ramalho just days after selling Brazil star Neymar to Barcelona.

The role will be temporarily filled by the Brazilian club’s Under-20 coach Claudenei Oliveira until a permanent replacement is found, Santos said Friday, reports Xinhua.

“The management committee decided Muricy Ramalho is no longer coach of Santos FC’s professional team. The trainer was told of the decision Thursday,” the club said in a statement.

The announcement follows the club’s 1-2 defeat to Botafogo in Brazil’s Serie A championship Wednesday.

Ramalho, who took charge of the club in April 2011, led Santos to their third Copa Libertadores trophy, two Paulista championships and the South American Supercup. His departure, and that of 21-year-old Neymar to Camp Nou, marks the end of arguably Santos’s most successful era since Pele made the club famous in the late 1950s and 60s.

“Santos are beginning a reformulation process after one of the best periods in the 101-year history of the club,” the statement said.

Former Corinthians’ and Brazil boss Mano Menezes and Atletico Bilbao’s Argentine manager Marcelo Bielsa have reportedly been short-listed as candidates for the vacant position.

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