Soccer: Eli Gutman steps down as national team coach after failed Euro campaign

October 14, 2015 13:46


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Eli Gutman's four-year tenure as Israel coach officially came to an end on Wednesday morning, a day after the national team's Euro 2016 qualifying campaign finished in bitter disappointment.

Gutman's departure was widely expected following the blue-and-white's failure to reach the playoffs, with Israel ending qualifying Group B in fourth place after losing 3-1 to Belgium in its final match in Brussels on Tuesday.

The national team harbored hopes of qualifying automatically for next summer's European Championships in France after opening the campaign with three straight wins for the first time since joining UEFA 23 years ago. However, it picked up just four of a possible 21 points from its final seven qualifiers, and not only failed to finish among the top two in the group, but also missed out on third position and a place in the playoffs.

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