Posted: Tuesday January 31, 2012 7:49 AM

Struggling Sporting fires coach Manuel Preciado

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GIJON, Spain (AP) -Struggling Sporting Gijon has fired coach Manuel Preciado after five-plus seasons with the Spanish club.

Sporting has lost four of five games and is 19th in the league, three points from safety.

Sporting president Manuel Vega-Arango says the decision wasn't easy, but that the club came first and "that's football.''

Preciado was the longest standing coach with a topflight Spanish club after taking over for the 2006-07 season.

Sporting was promoted in his second season but has barely avoided relegation since, with the 54-year-old Preciado leading the Asturian club to a 10th-place finish last season.

Assistant Inaki Tejada will coach Sporting on Sunday against Osasuna.

 
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