By Richard Martin
BARCELONA (Reuters) – Las Palmas have been prevented from appointing Jorge Almiron as their coach because he does not have enough experience according to UEFA rules, despite leading Argentine side Lanus to the 2017 Copa Libertadores final.
La Liga’s bottom club published a letter from the Spanish soccer association (RFEF)‘s coaches committee on Thursday explaining the decision.
The European governing body’s rules stipulate that coaches must have been a first team boss at a top flight club for a minimum of five years if they do not have a UEFA coaching licence.
Argentine Almiron began his coaching career in 2008 in the Mexican second division but did not get his first top flight job until 2013 with Tijuana.
He later coached in the top division in his home country with Godoy Cruz in 2014 and then Argentine giants Independiente.
He became coach of Lanus in 2016 and in the same year led the club to the Argentine league title.
This season he steered them to the final of South America’s top club competition, the Copa Libertadores, for the first time in their history, where they were beaten 3-1 on aggregate by Brazilian side Gremio.
The Canary Island side Las Palmas are bottom of the Liga standings on 10 points from 15 games, having won one of their last 11 matches. They have already parted ways with two managers.
Manolo Marquez resigned in September and Pako Ayestaran was sacked on Nov. 30 after taking one point from seven games.
“Las Palmas understood that this criteria has been subject to an appeal in other instances but accepts the decision expressed in the official statement which arrived at our offices today,” the club said on their official website.
“The club would like to dearly thank Jorge Almiron for his predisposition to coach the team in these delicate times and wishes him the best in his professional career, confident that in the future our paths may cross again.”
(Reporting by Richard Martin; Editing by Richard Balmforthv and Toby Davis)