Madrid (AFP) – Deportivo la Coruna hired former Real Betis and West Bromwich Albion coach Pepe Mel on Tuesday with the task of leading the Galicians away from the La Liga relegation zone.

Gaizka Garitano was sacked by Deportivo on Sunday after Saturday’s 4-0 defeat at Leganes left the 1999/2000 La Liga winners just one place and two points above the relegation zone.

“Jose Mel Perez has become the new coach of RC Deportivo this lunchtime until the end of the season with the option for an extension to his contract,” Deportivo said in a statement.

Mel guided West Brom to safety in a five-month spell in England in 2014.

However, the majority of his coaching career has been spent at Betis, where he twice achieved promotion in two spells and took Los Verdiblancos into Europe after finishing seventh in 2012/13.