He left Gijón in June 1977 after three seasons as a midfielder with Sporting, including one season in the Primera División. Four decades since then, Paco Herrera is back in Gijón, the city which he himself says made him “a footballer and a person”, this time to take the coaching post at El Molinón, the oldest stadium in Spanish football.
Paco Herrera agrees one-year deal with Sporting Gijón
Herrera takes the reins at Sporting with the objective of taking the back back to the top flight. The 63-year-old has signed a one-year contract with the Asturians with the option of a second season, should he get the team promoted.
At Sporting, Herrera will be reunited with many of his old team mates: Quini, Redondo, Cundi and Joaquín will be waiting for him to help in his new post following his stint at Valladolid last season. He becomes Sporting's 55th coach in 112 years; in his relatively short experience of life in the top division, he has held coaching positions at Celta and Las Palmas and was Rafa Benítez's assistant at Liverpool, winning the Champions League, European Super Cup and FA Cup with the Reds.
Sporting went through two coaches last season - their second since gaining promotion back to LaLiga in 2015. Aberlardo was replaced by Rubi back in January this year but he couldn't turn the team's fortunes around and they ended the campaign in 18th place, becoming the final team to be relegated to the Liga 1|2|3.