Ivan Sopegno (left) was named the head coach of Guatemala on May 22, 2014, just days after guiding Comunicaciones to its fourth straight Guatemalan league title. (Photo: Juan Meoño)
GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala – Just days after capturing the 2014 Clausura title in Guatemala with Comunicaciones, Ivan Sopegno has been named head coach of the country’s national team.
The 50-year-old was officially presented on Thursday at a press conference.
"It's an honor to direct the national team of the country I consider to be mine since I have been living here for 20 years,” said the Argentina-born Sopegno. "I asked the president (of the Guatemalan Football Federation, Dr. Brayan Jimenez) to not play the friendlies and in the coming week we will work on our plan.”
The appointment permanently fills an opening that has essentially existed since Ever Hugo Almeida’s departure after Guatemala failed to advance past the semifinal round of World Cup Qualifying for Brazil 2014.
Sopegno, who won five domestic championships with Comunicaciones, is charged with reinvigorating the program and earning a place at the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup via this year’s Copa Centroamericana, which will be played in the United States, September 3-13.
His coaching staff will initially consist of assistants Mario Acevedo and Jose Emilio Mitrovich, plus trainer Ruben Gonzalez.