After agreeing to take the Real Madrid job after the World Cup, Lopetegui's decision angered federation chief Luis Rubiales to such an extent that he parted ways with him two days before Spain's opener against Portugal.
Fernando Hierro has now taken over instead, but the Atletico Madrid man believes that the wrong decision was taken.
"It was surprising and I think the decision, although everyone can have their own opinions and reasons, should have been discussed with us, but the players weren't asked," he told TVE.
"I don't think it was the right time.
"Julen [Lopetegui] deserved to continue after guiding us here and preparing for the World Cup for two years with us."