Sevilla have announced the departure of sporting director Monchi, who is regarded as the architect of one of the most successful periods in the club’s history.
The 48-year-old, who played for Sevilla as a goalkeeper in the 1990s, was appointed to the role in 2000 and tasked with developing the club’s youth system and scouting network.
Under Monchi’s supervision, the youth team helped to nurture the likes of Jesus Navas, Sergio Ramos and Jose Antonio Reyes, and when Sevilla went on to win five Europa League titles in 11 seasons he was picked out as a key figure in the club’s success.
Monchi asked to leave at the end of the 2015-16 season “for personal reasons”, only to have his request rejected by the club, but an agreement has now been reached for his departure.
President Jose Castro will hold a press conference with Monchi to announce details of the agreement on Friday.
Monchi has been linked to a number of European clubs, including Manchester United, Real Madrid, Everton and, most recently, Roma. The Serie A side are strongly rumoured to be edging closer to luring Monchi to Italy.
Earlier this month Sevilla coach Jorge Sampaoli spoke about wanting indications that the club can continue to challenge Spain and Europe’s elite before committing to an extended contract.
Sampaoli stated talks were still at an informal stage and emphasised the importance of “sporting structure” – arguably a reference to the status of Monchi.
He said: “[My contract renewal] will depend on the sporting objectives and on the structure of the club.
“Sevilla is gaining a lot of respect across the globe and this level has to be maintained with a great sporting structure. We’ll have to see what the club wants with its coaching staff.”
Sampaoli has been talked up by the likes of Hristo Stoichkov as a potential future Barcelona boss, with Luis Enrique set to step down at the end of the season.