Video - Gary Neville sacked as Valencia manager

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Neville's reign in Spain ends in pain
Neville's reign in Spain ends in pain

Gary Neville has been sacked as Valencia manager, after a brief, turbulent and ultimately disastrous stint at the helm of the Spanish giants.

The 41-year-old, who is also a coach in Roy Hodgson's England set-up, was a surprise replacement for Nuno Espirito Santo in December, and he struggled to make an impression at the Mestalla.

With Valencia languishing in 14th place in the Primera Division table, Los Che on Wednesday announced Neville had been relieved of his duties as first-team coach, with former Liverpool assistant Pako Ayestaran taking the reins until the end of the season.

A statement published on read: "Valencia have today terminated the contractual relationship with first-team coach Gary Neville.

"After carefully analysing the situation, the club have decided to make this change in the best interests of Valencia when looking toward the rest of the season.

"The club thank Gary Neville for his work and wish him the best of luck for the future."

The long-serving Manchester United right-back, just returned from England's double-header against Germany and Holland, reciprocated Valencia's thanks with a short message on the Spanish side's website.

"I want to thank Valencia, the fans, the coaching staff and players," he said.

"I would have liked to continue the work I started, but I understand that we are in business based on results and in 28 games we have seen 10 wins, seven draws and 11 defeats, which is not the level demanded by me or by this club."

Neville's move to Spain always seemed to be a gamble for a respected voice of the game who had established himself as a voice on Sky Sports. 

He remains the bookies favourite to succeed Hodgson as England manager, yet this ill-fated foray into coaching will have dented his hopes of claiming high profile coaching positions in the future.

Sky Sports confirmed the door will always be open for Neville to return to his role as a TV pundit and it remains to be seen whether he will now get back to his post alongside Jamie Carragher on Monday Night Football.

Yet after his torrid time in Spain, he may well decide to take a break from the game ahead of his role with the England squad at Euro 2016 this summer.