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Steaua coach resigns after Champions League cast away

Latest update : 2008-10-22

Marius Lacatus, Steaua Bucarest's coach since last October, resigned as a result of the poor Champions League performance against France's Lyon, where the Romanian club lost 3-5.

Steaua Bucharest coach Marius Lacatus has resigned from his position the day after his side's humiliating 3-5 home loss to Lyon in the Champions League, press reports said Wednesday.

The reports quoted club owner Gigi Becali as saying that Lacatus had handed in his notice to avoid pressure growing on the club and his players.

A former player with Fiorentina in Italy and Real Ovieda in Spain, Lacatus took over as Steaua coach a year ago following the resignation of Gheorghe Hagi who had disagreements with Becali.

The club are currently third in the Romanian first division and the Champions League defeat to Lyon after twice leading leaves them struggling to qualify for the last 16 of the competition.

"The Lyon result was very painful for me - I wanted the win and didn't get it," said Lacatus.

"Things went badly and then there were declarations from Becali, which led to interpretations and engendered tension," said Lacatus in allusion to criticism from Becali following the match about his tactical nous.

Becali had told reporters that "if things continue like this it will be a lost year for Steaua".

Lacatus explained: "I thought it best to withdraw and have the team carry on under another coach."

In the league Steaua also have ground to make up as after 11 games they stand third, four points behind leaders Dinamo Bucharest.

Date created : 2008-10-22