Guimaraes Resigns As Soccer Team Coach

July 7, 2006

Costa Rican National Soccer Team coach Alexandre Guimaraes announced his resignation Monday, citing threats made against him and his family.

“I’m leaving despite my contract until 2010 … I want to clarify that I am not leaving for economic reasons – I am resigning without any economic benefit,” Guimaraes said at a press conference.

Guimaraes, a Costa Rican citizen of Brazilian origin, said the performance of the Costa Rican team, known as La Selección, at the 2006 World Cup in Germany should not be considered a failure, though the team lost all three games it played.

“I understand that fans and the press were sad, but I cannot accept aggression and threats, which, in the past few weeks, have turned violent,” he said.

Guimaraes, 46, who coached La Selección toward qualifying in the World Cup in South Korea and Japan in 2002 and Germany in 2006, said the Costa Rican media has attacked him and tried to discredit his “successful” career.

“I will never forget all the glorious moments we have shared together and the pain we returned with every time we lost,” Guimaraes added, wishing the team luck in the future.

Though Guimaraes did not specify his career plans, he said he “has his future clear.”

 

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