Former French international player Frederic Soyez has been named the coach of the Spain men’s hockey team. The Real Spanish Federation of Hockey took this decision to appoint Soyez after the contract of former coach Salvador Indurain was not renewed after a two-year stint, following Spain’s disappointing eight place finish at the 2014 Rabobank World Cup.
The Spanish side under coach Salvador Indurain managed to win only one game in their league phase – they lost 0-3 to Australia 2-5 to Belgium, drew England 1-1, drew India before pulling off their only win – a 5-2 victory over Malaysia – they lost to New Zealand 1-4 in a shootout in the 7/8 place classification match after both teams are locked 1-1 in normal time.
Indurain’s replacement Soyez had earlier served as the national coach of the France men’s hockey team as well as the Under-21 teams, is well acquainted with Spanish hockey having played in the Spanish league for over 7 years. He made 196 international appearances for France and scored 195 goals and ended his playing career in 2009 before taking up coaching with Lille in 2010, helping them win the French national title to qualify for the EHL in the 2012/13 season.
Soyex’s main challenge will be to lift Spain’s fortunes at the 2016 Rio Olympics – they had finished sixth in the 2012 London Olympics after losing to Belgium in the 5/6th place tie.