Jose Pekerman has quit as coach of Argentina after their quarter-final defeat to Germany on penalties.
“This has come to an end and I will certainly not go on,” he said.
“You have to make a decision and I’m convinced I’ve done everything in my reach, and it’s time to look for something else.
“I’m very sorry for the coaches and the fans and the players, this team deserves to go further but we couldn’t make it.”
Argentina led through a Roberto Ayala goal but Miroslav Klose’s late equaliser sent the game into extra-time. With the deadlock unable to be broken, Argentina were eliminated fromthe compeitition on penalties.
The 56-year-old Pekerman added: “It was a very exciting match. We also played like favourites and gave our best although we lost.
“The penalties were a consequence of a very even match. It’s a shame for Argentina who played very well and in the whole championship.”
Klose’s equaliser came eight minutes after Pekerman had taken off playmaker Juan Riquelme and after he had brought on Julio Cruz as his final substitute, thus depriving his team of the creative skills of Lionel Messi.
With hindsight, the decision to remove Riquelme looks a major blunder by Pekerman, as, in his absence, Argentina struggled to dictate the pace of the game and always looked vulnerable once Germany had equalised.
Pekerman took over as Argentina coach in September 2004, having previously led the Under-20 side to three World Youth Championships.