Santos Laguna manager Robert Siboldi resigns

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Just three months after leading Los Guerreros to a Liga MX title, the Uruguayan is leaving the club

Santos Laguna manager Robert Siboldi and his coaching staff handed in their resignations Wednesday and the club accepted, according to a club statement.

Los Guerreros were coming off a 2-0 victory against Puebla this weekend and have won two of the first three matches of the season. The team fought for a 1-1 draw with Celaya in Copa MX play Tuesday. However, it seems that not all was well in the locker room of the reigning champion.

“During the weekend, it was brought to our attention that there have been a series of differences between the coaching staff which derive from a conflict with a player breaking the code of ethics in an irreparable manner, creating an atmosphere that is not proper for the good of the team and that goes against the philosophy and the values of the institution," a club statement read. "For this reason, the coaching staff, recognizing the seriousness of its actions and omissions, present its resignation and the club decided to accept it..."

TThe decision comes as a shock after Siboldi led the club to the Clausura title just three months ago. He had coached the club's youth teams before taking over as interim manager in the 2017 Apertura and eventually getting the job full-time after good showings during the eight matches he oversaw with the temporary title.

Veteran center back Gerardo Alcoba is the player involved in the conflict mentioned in the club's statement but did not disclose the nature of the disputes.

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"I'm going to speak and be clear, not answer questions. I was the player affected with the recent problems with the coaching staff," he said at a news conference.The internal conflicts with them affected me. I overreacted, believing things were unfair, and I'll take on my responsability. I'm going to fight to win the confidence of my teammates once again. The only thing I want to say is that the truth is the only weapon a true man has."

Several of Siboldi's stars, including center backs Carlos Izquierdoz and Nestor Araujo, forward Djaniny and youth forward Joao Maleck were sold during the summer. United States international Jorge Villafana is set for an MLS return as well. But with frequent player sales part of the Santos business model and a strong start to the Apertura, it is unlikely those departures influenced the decision. 

Interim manager Salvador Reyes de la Pena, who had led the team's youth sides, led a Wednesday night training session. His first test will come Sunday with Santos traveling to Guadalajara to face Chivas.

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