MOSCOW (AP) — Russia ice hockey coach Zinetula Bilyaletdinov is leaving his job after the home team’s disappointing quarterfinals exit at the Sochi Olympics.
The International Ice Hockey Federation says Russia is looking for a new coach before the world championship in May in Belarus. The IIHF says Russian hockey federation officials agreed to Bilyaletdinov’s departure after meeting with him on Wednesday.
Russia lost 3-1 to Finland to miss out on an Olympic medal which was among the nation’s top priorities at the Sochi Games. Bilyaletdinov made headlines in the aftermath of that loss when he told reporters that they could, “Eat me alive.”
Bilyaletdinov was appointed in June 2011 and led the team to be world champions the following year.
As a player for the Soviet Union, he won gold at the 1984 Sarajevo Olympics and silver in 1980 at Lake Placid.
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