The Argentine Football Association (AFA) quietly announced that it had parted company with coach Jorge Sampaoli by “mutual consent,” following the national team's poor campaign in Russia.“Today the Argentine Football Association and Jorge Sampaoli agreed by mutual consent to bring to an end his position as head of the national team,” AFA said in a statement.
The split comes just one year into Sampaoli's five-year contract and rounds off a disastrous few years for the Argentine national team and AFA chiefs.
Hotly rated in the game, Sampaoli, 58, achieved great success with spells in charge of Universidad de Chile, the Chilean national team and Sevilla. AFA hired him on a long-term contract, with expectations he would be judged by the national team's campaign at World Cup 2022, which will be hosted by Qatar.
However, Sampaoli days as coach were numbered after the Albiceleste failed to fire in Russia, with their campaign fraught with tension and dispute.
Appointed in June 2017, his final game in charge was the last 4-3 defeat to France, who were crowned world champions earlier Sunday. Divorce proceedings were complicated by Sampaoli's reluctance to resign and a costly contract clause were the AFA to sack him.
Reports in local sports newspaper Ole and national daily Clarin suggested he is walking away with a US$2 million pay-off, a far lower amount than previously speculated. Previous reports suggested AFA would have had to pay over US$8 million to terminate the coach's contract early.