Discarded Del Bosque honoured by Real

MADRID - Real Madrid have awarded an honorary membership to World Cup winning coach Vicente del Bosque, eight years after he was unceremoniously dumped by the Spanish club.

Del Bosque won the Champions League twice and delivered two La Liga titles after taking over as coach midway through the 1999/2000 season yet despite that glittering record the club decided to dispense with his services in 2003.

Florentino Perez, who was club president at the time, returned for a second spell in 2009 and he presided over the board meeting where Del Bosque was selected for the highest distinction Real can offer.

Real said the award was in recognition for his work as Spain coach, following last year's triumph at the World Cup in South Africa.

"Vicente del Bosque is recognised for his impeccable work as the coach of World Cup champions Spain," Real said.

Tennis world number one Rafa Nadal and opera singer Placido Domingo, both Real fans, were also selected for the honour, the club said on their website.