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By ESPN Staff

Gonzalez leaves Santander

Racing Santander have parted company with coach Juan Jose Gonzalez after just four months in the post.

Gonzalez was named as caretaker manager at the end of November following the dismissal of Hector Cuper and, after a successful interim period, Racing announced in December that he would remain in charge until the end of the season. However, following a poor run of form, the Primera Division strugglers today announced that Gonzalez was no longer coach.

Fede Castanos and Pablo Pinillos, who were part of the coaching trio put in charge following Cuper's departure, will lead the team while Racing search for a permanent successor.

A statement on the Racing website read: ''As of this morning, Juan Jose Gonzalez has ceased to be the coach of Racing. Until it is decided who will occupy the bench, in the final stretch of the season, Fede Castanos and Pablo Pinillos will continue at the helm of the team.''

Since picking up seven points from three games at the start of December, Racing have managed a return of only four points from a possible 21.

Saturday's 4-2 defeat at Rayo Vallecano proved the final game in charge for Gonzalez, who leaves with Racing 18th in the 20-team Primera Division and three points adrift of safety.

The statement continued: ''We want to show our appreciation to Juan Jose Gonzalez who, at the request of the club, took on a great responsibility at a very difficult time. Now, still in difficulty, the team continue fighting, is alive, committed and with a chance to stay up.

''But to achieve that it is necessary, essential, to be together, that everyone associated with Racing remain united. For that, we ask for the support of everybody around the club as only from being together will we achieve the objective of safety.''

Racing are at home to Barcelona this weekend.

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