Atletico Madrid fires Gregorio Manzano

Updated: December 22, 2011, 4:19 PM ET
Associated Press

MADRID -- Atletico Madrid has fired coach Gregorio Manzano following the club's embarrassing exit from the Copa del Rey.

The club's executive board reached a unanimous decision Thursday, a day after the team's 3-1 aggregate loss to third-tier Albacete. Manzano had been coaching the team less than six months. Atletico is 10th in the Spanish league, four points above the relegation zone.

In another coaching move in Spain, Villarreal promoted B-team coach Jose Francisco Molina to replace the fired Juan Carlos Garrido for the rest of the season.

Garrido also was promoted from the B team nearly two years ago. He was dismissed Wednesday after the club's ouster from the Copa del Rey by third-tier Mirandes, 3-1 on aggregate.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press