River Plate have confirmed what was already widely known, that Marcelo Gallardo will leave the club at the end of the year and with that in mind the task of finding a suitable replacement is underway.
Vice-president Jorge Brito spoke to Fox Sports and explained that Enzo Francescoli is working on identifying the successor to Gallardo.
“We know that el Muñeco [Gallardo] is leaving,” confirmed Brito.
“Enzo [Francescoli] is working on his replacement but I think it will be someone who knows the corridors of the Monumental very well.”
Host Martín Liberman responded and suggested that Diego Simeone’s assistant at Atlético Madrid and former River Plate goalkeeper Germán Burgos was such a candidate to which Brito replied: “He is in the ideas of Enzo. I can’t say no.”
Burgos has been Simeone’s fiery right-hand man for the entire successful period in charge of Atleti and could be tempted by a return to the Monumental, where he won five Primera titles and the Copa Libertadores in the 1990s.
There is no immediate rush for River since Gallardo’s eventual departure has been clear since he contemplated his future at the end of the year.
The hugely successful 41-year-old admitted to being tired but after a few days decided to remain in charge for another year and attempt to recapture the Copa Libertadores title.
Brito acknowledged that time is on River’s side, “There is a long way to go, first up is the transfer window in June, in which we need to conform with Gallardo, in addition to thinking to the future with any additions.”
As the end of the year draws closer, speculation will increase and Eduardo Coudet may enter the conversations but regardless of what River achieve this year, Gallardo will leave some big shoes to fill.