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Published: 12:04 | 13/4/16

Valencia owner clarifies Neville exit

Departure "mutually and amicably agreed"

Valencia owner Peter Lim has clarified the circumstances surrounding the departure of Gary Neville from the club last month.

The former Manchester United player endured a turbulent four months at the Mestalla helm, winning just of his 16 La Liga games as Valencia slipped from the fringes of European contention to sitting precariously above the drop zone.

The respected pundit did guide the Spanish side to the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey but they were on the wrong end of a 7-0 first leg humiliation at the hands of Barcelona while their run to the Europa League last 16 was ended, in an unlucky manner, by Athletic Bilbao.

The axe fell soon after and amid reports that Lim was on holidays when this happened, a spokesman of his has moved to clarify matters.

“Gary Neville’s departure as the manager of Valencia was mutually and amicably agreed between both sides,” the spokesman told Strait Times.

“This decision was carefully considered and made with the best interests of the club moving forward.

“Gary had also endorsed the appointment of his assistant manager Pako Ayestaran as his replacement.

“The timing of the announcement was agreed beforehand with Gary to take place after the international break so as to minimise disruption to the Valencia team.

“Mr Peter Lim was fully involved in all key aspects of the decision and was not, as some reports have portrayed, away in Bali on holiday throughout the process.

“On the day of the announcement, Mr Lim was away in Bali on a business trip and not for a holiday."

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