Sunday 19 January 2020

Poland part with head coach Adam Nawalka after early World Cup exit

Poland were eliminated after losing their first two group games in Russia.

Adam Nawalka is to step down as Poland head coach (Jonathan Brady/PA)
Adam Nawalka is to step down as Poland head coach (Jonathan Brady/PA)

By Press Association Sport staff

Adam Nawalka will leave his position as Poland manager following a disappointing World Cup campaign, the Polish Football Association has announced.

Nawalka, whose team were eliminated after losing their opening two games in Russia, will step down at the end of the month after five years in charge.

“I am very sorry but I am optimistic about the future of Polish football and my coaching as a coach,” said Nawalka at a press conference.

Robert Lewandowski could not fire Poland to success in Russia (Eugene Hoshiko/AP)

“Of course, I feel responsible that at the championships we have not met expectations and ambitions, our own and fans.

“I take full responsibility, because it’s always the role of a trainer and I do not run away from it.

“With dignity I accept a wave of criticism: sometimes malicious, sometimes substantive.”

Nawalka took charge of his country in 2013 and led them to the quarter-finals of Euro 2016 where they were beaten on penalties by eventual champions Portugal.

They then comfortably qualified for the World Cup but struggled at the tournament.

Zbigniew Boniek (left) will lead the search for Nawalka’s successor (Nick Potts/PA)

After losing their opening Group H game to Senegal, they were knocked out by a 3-0 defeat to Colombia, before salvaging some pride with victory over Japan.

Zbigniew Boniek, president of the Polish Football Association, said Nawalka had failed to meet expectations at the tournament.

“We were hoping that we would offer our fans, all Poles a greater adventure and definitely more emotions,” said Boniek.

“Unfortunately, it failed. There are victories in sport, but there are also failures.

“Although we all tried to prepare the best for the tournament in terms of sport and logistics, it turned out that these football championships did not quite work out. That is why the time has come for analysis.

“Adam will be the head coach of the national team until July 30. Later we will be looking for a new manager.”

PA Media

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