Real Valladolid and Espanyol fire coaches

Real Valladolid fired coach Jose 'Pacheta' Rojo on Monday while Espanyol confirmed they had axed boss Diego Martinez.

Espanyol have slipped to 17th in Spain's 20-team La Liga, after losing four straight league games.

They are ahead of Almeria in the first relegation place only on goal difference.

Valladolid lost 6-0 at Real Madrid on Sunday and are one point and one place better off than Espanyol.

Martinez held a farewell press conference at Espanyol following the club's announcement that he was leaving.

"Results lead our organisation to make this decision with the sole and clear objective of staying in the top flight," said Espanyol in a statement.

They named their former striker Luis Garcia, who moves from coaching Real Madrid's 'C' team, as his replacement until June, 2024.

Valladolid, whose president is former Brazil great Ronaldo, echoed the sentiments in a statement posted on their website as they dismissed the coach who led them to promotion last year in his first season in charge.

"The club recognises the important career of the coach and the role he has played in the team since his arrival but, with the sole objective of achieving survival in the top flight at the end of the current campaign, we have opted to continue in another direction," said the Valladolid statement.

Rojo and Martinez join a long list of La Liga clubs splitting with their managers this season, including Sevilla, who axed Jorge Sampaoli, and last-placed Elche who fired Pablo Machin, their fifth change of coach this season.

Valencia sacked Gennaro Gattuso in January and then replaced the stand-in, Voro, in February.

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