Spanish side Athletic Bilbao have appointed Javier Clemente to replace Jose Luis Mendilibar, who was sacked earlier today.

Former national coach Javier Clemente returns to the club he led to successive titles in 1983 and 1984. It will be his third spell in charge; a second spell at Bilbao in 1991 was brief and unsuccessful.

He also had a six-year stint in charge of the national side and led Spain to the quarter-finals of the 1994 World Cup and the 1996 European Championship.

Since then he has had brief spells at Real Betis, Real Sociedad, Espanyol, and French side Marseille.

Athletic chairman Fernando Lamikiz told a news conference he was sad to have to dispense with the services of Mendilibar but with just one in ten games so far this season, he felt he had no choice.

“It is a very sad and difficult day for the club because it isn’t a nice decision to take,” said Lamikiz.

“We are losing a great coach and a great person who we had hoped would be a long-term appointment.”

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