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Stats suggest Bale is Madrid's fall guy

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By ESPN Staff

Struggling Almeria appoint Olabe

Primera Division strugglers Almeria have appointed Roberto Olabe as their new coach until the end of the season following the dismissal of Jose Luis Oltra.

Oltra was sacked on Tuesday following Monday night's 3-1 home defeat to Athletic Bilbao, which left Almeria bottom of the standings and four points adrift of safety with eight games left.

Olabe, who will take charge of his first training session on Wednesday afternoon before being officially presented on Thursday, was Almeria's sporting director when they won promotion to the top flight in the 2006-07 season under current Valencia boss Unai Emery.

Olabe has also been the sporting director at Real Sociedad - who he coached as well, saving the club from relegation in 2002 - and Real Valladolid. As a player he was a goalkeeper with Sociedad, Alaves and Salamanca.

The 43-year-old Basque is set for a baptism of fire in his first game as Almeria take on league leaders Barcelona at Camp Nou this weekend.

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