Sevilla gives Sampaoli winning send-off from Spanish league
ABS-CBN Sports on May 21, 2017 10:21 AM
FILE - In this Nov. 17, 2015, file photo, Chilean soccer team coach Jorge Sampaoli gestures to his players during a FIFA World Cup qualifying soccer match between Uruguay and Chile in Montevideo. Sampaoli says the Argentine soccer federation will negotiate with Spanish club Sevilla to secure his release so he can become the country's national team coach. Sampaoli says "there is a clear intention by my country to have me as its national coach, and I have had that dream since I was very young." (AP Photo/Victor R. Caivano, File)
JOSEPH WILSON, Associated Press
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Sevilla routed Osasuna 5-0 on Saturday in what coach Jorge Sampaoli hoped was his last match for the Spanish side before he takes over as the coach of Argentina.
Sampaoli announced on Friday that the Argentine Football Association will meet with Sevilla to secure his release from the last year of his contract.
Victor "Vitolo" Machin and Franco Vazquez scored twice each and Stevan Jovetic added another to ensure Sampaoli can finish his season in Seville in fine fashion.
Sevilla was already locked into a fourth-place finish in the Spanish league before the final round. That was good enough to secure a playoff for the Champions League.
Sampaoli made Sevilla into an outside contender for the league title until a late season dip in form coincided with rumors that Argentina wanted him to replace the fired Edgardo Bauza.
"Many people may be disappointed with us, but our goal all along was to reach third or fourth place," said Vitolo, who was linked to interest from Atletico Madrid. "We achieved our objectives and our fans can be happy."
There were three other matches whose outcome could have no impact on European berths.
Sporting Gijon bid farewell to the first division with a 2-2 draw at home with Real Betis. Leganes got an 89th-minute goal from David Timor to draw with Alaves 1-1, and Deportivo La Coruna routed Las Palmas 3-0.
Osasuna, Granada and Sporting were already relegated before the final round.
Real Madrid can win the league if it takes a draw from the visit to Malaga.
Barcelona needs to win at home over Eibar and for Malaga to beat Madrid to retain the title for a third year in a row.