Soccer: Struggling Kobe appoint Lotina as new manager

© Kyodo News

Vissel Kobe have appointed Spaniard Miguel Angel Lotina as their new manager, the J-League first-division club said Friday, after starting the season with four draws and five defeats.

Vissel, who finished third last season, opened the J1 campaign with seven games without a win and sacked Atsuhiro Miura on March 20. They then lost two games under Spanish interim manager Lluis Planaguma Ramos and currently sit 17th, second from bottom.

The 64-year-old Lotina, who managed a host of clubs back home including Celta, Espanyol and Deportivo, managed J2 Tokyo Verdy for two seasons from 2017 before taking the reins at Cerezo Osaka for two years, guiding them to fourth in 2020.

"I hope to give the team a clear idea," Lotina, who was sacked by Shimizu S-Pulse late last season, said at a press conference.