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Escribá succeeds Marcelino as Villarreal coach

Play-off entrants Villarreal have moved swiftly to replace Marcelino – who left by mutual consent on Wednesday – appointing former Elche and Getafe coach Fran Escribá.

Fran Escribá will hope to guide Villarreal into the group stage
Fran Escribá will hope to guide Villarreal into the group stage ©AFP/Getty Images

After parting company with Marcelino on Wednesday, Villarreal have named Fran Escribá as their new coach.

The 51-year-old, who left Getafe in April, has penned a 12-month deal. His first fixture in charge of the Yellow Submarine will be the opening leg of their UEFA Champions League play-off tie against Monaco on Wednesday.

"It's very important for the club to qualify for the UEFA Champions League," Escribá said at his unveiling on Thursday. "The feeling in the dressing room is good and despite the absences we have I think we've got a good chance of getting through the play-off."

Fran Escribá has taken over from Marcelino
Fran Escribá has taken over from Marcelino©AFP/Getty Images

While acknowledging that his appointment has come as something of a "surprise," he also spoke of his confidence in being able to help last season's UEFA Europa League semi-finalists move forward. "It's a big opportunity for me," he said. "I've got high hopes and want to help. We want to have a good year and carry on being successful."

Escribá played youth football for Valencia, and though he never made a professional appearance for the Mestalla outfit, he began his coaching career with their youth sides in 2002.

He then worked as understudy to Quique Sánchez Flores at Valencia, Getafe, Benfica and Atlético Madrid between 2004 and 2011 and took his first frontline position with Segunda team Elche in June 2012. After guiding them to promotion in his debut season, he helped the Franjiverdes retain their Liga status before joining Getafe last summer.