Soccer-LaLiga strugglers Alaves sack coach Mendilibar after 12 games

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - La Liga Santander - Atletico Madrid vs Eibar - Wanda Metropolitano, Madrid, Spain - September 15, 2018 Eibar coach Jose Luis Mendilibar gestures REUTERS/Sergio Perez

(Reuters) - LaLiga basement club Alaves have sacked head coach Jose Luis Mendilibar just 12 games after he was appointed to replace Javi Calleja, who was also fired.

Mendilibar's last game in charge was Saturday's 4-1 defeat at Atletico Madrid.

The loss left Alaves rooted to the bottom on 22 points, six behind 17th-placed Cadiz, with eight games remaining.

"Mendilibar came to (Alaves) ... at the end of last December, with the aim of reviving a team that was already in the relegation places," Alaves said in a statement on Monday.

"Despite the efforts of the coach and squad, the result has not been as expected. In the 12 games that (Mendilibar) has led Deportivo Alaves, only one victory has been achieved."

The 61-year-old had previously coached a number of clubs in Spain, including Athletic Bilbao, Eibar and Osasuna.

(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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