Tuesday 04 September 2018, 20:48

Pekerman steps down as Colombia coach

  • Long-serving Colombia coach Jose Pekerman steps down

  • Guided Los Cafeteros to their best World Cup showing at Brazil 2014

  • Arturo Reyes appointed on an interim basis

Jose Pekerman has stepped down as Colombia coach after six-and-a-half years in charge, the Colombian Football Federation (FCF) confirmed on Tuesday.

The 69-year-old, who led Los Cafeteros to two FIFA World Cups™, opted not to extend his contract with the South Americans.

''My Colombian daughter must be sad, but I leave with happiness for having people's support,'' Pekerman said. “I said it when I arrived, we need to work together, support the national team to achieve great things. There is a hard path that has been walked and we need to keep up the great work.''

Appointed to the role in January 2012, Pekerman guided Colombia to its first World Cup appearance in 16 years when it qualified for Brazil 2014. They went on to achieve their best result in a World Cup by reaching the quarter-finals.

The Argentine then successfully led the Colombians to this year’s World Cup in Russia, where they made the Round of 16 before losing to England in a penalty shoot-out.

Arturo Reyes has taken interim charge of the side for their friendly matches against Venezuela on Friday and Argentina next Tuesday.