SPARTAK Moscow will face Celtic in the Champions League next week with a new coach after Unai Emery was sacked yesterday following a 5-1 home defeat by city rivals Dynamo in the Russian Premier League.
“The club’s shareholders made a decision that Unai Emery will no longer coach Spartak,” director general Valery Karpin said after the game, adding that a decision on a new coach will be made in the next few days.
Emery had been given a vote of confidence by Spartak owner Leonid Fedun just five days ago after their 3-0 loss to Barcelona in the Champions League but, after the derby thrashing, the axe fell on the Spaniard.
Emery was appointed Spartak coach in May, replacing former Russia international Karpin despite the team finishing last season in second place and qualifying for the Champions League. The 41-year-old was given a two-year deal after he led Valencia to three consecutive third places in Spain behind Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Spartak, Russia’s most successful and popular club with nine league titles between 1992 and 2001, have not claimed a domestic trophy since winning the Russian Cup in 2003.