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Duarte leaves Portugal role

Portugal coach Orlando Duarte has stepped down after ten years in charge, culminating in January's run to their first UEFA European Futsal Championship final.

Orlando Duarte led Portugal to the Futsal EURO final in Hungary
Orlando Duarte led Portugal to the Futsal EURO final in Hungary ©Sportsfile

Orlando Duarte, who coached Portugal to the UEFA European Futsal Championship final in January, has stepped down after ten years at the helm.

The 53-year-old led Portugal to their first major final in January, losing an exciting decider in Debrecen 4-2 to Spain. Previously in charge of Atlético Clube de Portugal, Sporting Clube de Portugal, he joined the national-team set-up in 1996 and became head coach four years later, in time to help Portugal reach the 2000 FIFA Futsal World Cup semi-finals, a stage he also reached in the 2007 European Championship in Porto.

"It was rewarding to work with the best players, come into constant contact with other realities and meet new people of ability and with a contagious enthusiasm for futsal," Duarte said. His successor will be in place for Portugal's UEFA Futsal Euro 2012 qualifying campaign early next year.