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Sports

Real Madrid sack coach Carlo Ancelotti

Spanish giants Real Madrid have fired coach Carlo Ancelotti two weeks after being bounced from the Champions league. Real finished this season without winning major silverware.

Real Madrid sacked coach Carlo Ancelotti Monday, two weeks after the club was knocked out of the Champions League by Italian side Juventus.

"The board of directors has taken the decision this afternoon to relieve Carlo Ancelotti of his duties as coach of Real Madrid," Florentino Perez announced at a news conference Monday afternoon at Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

Ancelotti won the Champions League title with Real Madrid last year, but his team finished this season without major silverware, finishing second in the league to arch-rivals Barcelona and losing in the Copa del Rey final to city rivals Atletico.

"It has been a very hard decision…but Real Madrid is extremely demanding," Perez said, adding that he believed a new coach would give a new "impulse" to the club.

Perez said the team will name a new coach next week, with Napoli trainer Rafa Benitez said to be on the list of favorites for the job.

Borussia Dortmund coach

Jürgen Klopp

, who will be leaving the team following the upcoming German Cup final has also been linked with the post.

German international midfielder Toni Kroos, a relatively rare Real success story this season after his move from Bayern Munich, thanked Ancelotti on Monday evening via Twitter.

Real Madrid talisman and leading goal-scorer Cristiano Ronaldo had used Twitter to express his support for Ancelotti on Sunday.

Ancelotti, who had a three-year contract, joined Real Madrid from Paris Saint-Germain in 2013. He won a record four trophies with the team in 2014 and strung together 22 consecutive victories with the club from September through December 2014.

bw/msh (AP, AFP, Reuters)

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