With the German club on a run of three defeats across all competitions and five in their last seven, Bayer Leverkusen has sacked manager Roger Schmidt.
The side qualified for the Champions League last season with a third-place finish, but sit ninth this year. They progressed onto the knockout stage of the Champions League, but coughed up four goals to Atletico Madrid in the home leg of their matchup, and look likely doomed to drop out.
Schmidt has been in charge of Leverkusen since taking over in June of 2014, coming to the club from Red Bull Salzberg in Austria. He finishes with a 62-29-37 record at Bayer, having led them to a pair of Champions League showings with a fourth-placed finish in 2014/15 followed up by last year’s third-place standing.
This season, however, things have spiraled out of control. Bayer is in the midst of its worst finish in 14 years, and his final match in charge saw Borussia Dortmund run them ragged en route to a massive 6-2 scoreline.
“In view of the current sporting development we came to the conclusion after very detailed analysis and consultation that a separation, although painful, is unavoidable for the further development and aims of Bayer 04,” managing director Michael Schade said.
“I believe Roger Schmidt is an absolute top coach and that’s why I have always backed him with full confidence,” Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voeller said. “But now we have to act so we don’t lose sight of our goals. Now it’s solely about finding a new impulse in a difference constellation and finally getting some consistency in our performances.”