José Luis Mendilibar has accepted the proposal to renew Sevilla and will continue one more season at the helm of the Andalusian team. The coach has signed his contract on Tuesday morning at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán stadium with the president, José Castro, the vice president José María del Nido Carrasco and Monchi, the sports general director. This has been advanced by Del Nido himself in Cope Sevilla. "Next season's coach will be José Luis Mendilibar. This morning we signed the renewal and we already have a coach for a season with Sevilla in the Champions League." "He was very happy at Sevilla, he has lived a dream. We were very clear about it and we told him before the final that we trusted him to continue with us," added the Sevilla leader. "He's a coach like the top of a pine tree. He will lead a champion team. He has deserved it. We had it very clear," insisted Del Nido Carrasco. The Andalusian club has already made it official.
Mendilibar renews only for one year at the express request of Zaldibar's coach, who has always carried this policy in the many teams he has coached throughout his career. The 62-year-old Mendilibar will lead Sevilla in the Champions League after managing just seven continental clashes (five with Sevilla and two with Athletic). The coach arrived at the Andalusian team in a borderline situation, two points from the relegation zone, replacing Jorge Sampaoli. He debuted on matchday 27 beating Cádiz by 0-2, which opened a magnificent run of results in the League. Saved from any danger of relegation, the Andalusian team finished in a comfortable 12th place. Sevilla was the best team in April. Of the 13 league matches managed by Mendilibar, the Basque won six matches, drew four and lost three. The last two defeats came when the team was not playing anything in the domestic competition.
The greatest success and the key to the renewal of Mendilibar came, however, in the Europa League, in which Sevilla eliminated Manchester United in the quarterfinals and Juventus in the semifinals to prevail in the final against Roma. It was the seventh in the history of the entity, all achieved in this century. In Europe, the coach won two matches and drew two, to beat Roma on penalties in the final. Mendilibar, who arrived with a very low contract, sees his economic income considerably improved.
The news of the renewal of Mendilibar comes at a time of uncertainty in the dome of the Andalusian club. Monchi, Sevilla's sporting director, is mulling his continuity. In a vital moment for the planning of next season, with the team in the Champions League, Sevilla could be left without its most emblematic figure, Monchi, always associated with the conquest in this century of eleven titles and the dispute of 22 finals. The executive has requested a few days of reflection after a season in which the struggle for power has been accentuated in Sevilla.
"Right now it is more outside than inside," sources of all solvency point out to this newspaper. However, Monchi's personality is complex. The executive has come out quite burned out of a season in which he has felt more controlled than ever. Who exercises this control? Undoubtedly, the president José Castro, and the vice president, José María del Nido Carrasco, son of the former president of the entity and its maximum shareholder, José María del Nido. The three are part, together with the general director, José María Cruz, of the executive committee of the entity. Actually, the first three make the decisions at Sevilla. The only one who has spoken publicly about it has been the vice president and CEO José María del Nido Carrasco. "Monchi has a current and indefinite contract. There is no one at Sevilla who does not want Monchi to lead Sevilla's planning for the next 750 years. I am not aware that he meditates leaving. There is nothing that makes us think that he is leaving," said the leader.
The relationship in the dome of Sevilla began to twist last summer. Both the president and the vice president viewed with suspicion the continuity of Julen Lopetegui on the bench, something in which Monchi insisted. Subsequently, the executive did not want to dismiss the Basque coach either. The authority of Castro and Del Nido, who advocated Lopetegui's farewell, prevailed. On the day of his dismissal, Monchi went out to the pitch to hug Julen while the stands took it with the box. Subsequently, Monchi did not endorse the arrival of Jorge Sampaoli either. Of course, the sporting director regained power by signing Mendilibar as a substitute for the Argentine after a winter market in which Monchi did straighten out his erratic summer planning with the arrival of Ocampos, Badé, Gil and Gueye. These two performances have been decisive for Sevilla to have successfully finished a campaign that was presented with dramatic dyes for a club accustomed to success.
Monchi has participated in the renewal of José Luis Mendilibar, but considers that this moment may be the right one to leave Sevilla, something he did already in 2017 when he signed for Roma. Speculation soars at times. It is already stated that Monchi has offers from the Premier League (Aston Villa and Tottenham) and that even the club is already thinking about possible replacements.
You can follow EL PAÍS Deportes on Facebook and Twitter, or sign up here to receive our weekly newsletter.