Aston Villa have sacked their coach Steven Gerrard following 3-0 defeat to Fulham on Thursday night.
The former Liverpool midfielder took charge at Villa Park last November and secured 14th-placed finish in 2021/22.
Villa have won two of 12 Premier League games this season.
The club’s decision was announced shortly after Gerrard’s side suffered a comprehensive 3-0 defeat against Fulham at Craven Cottage – Villa’s sixth defeat in just 11 Premier League games.
A statement released after the match read: Aston Villa Football Club can confirm that Head Coach Steven Gerrard has left the club with immediate effect.
A club spokesman said: “We would like to thank Steven for his hard work and commitment and wish him well for the future.”
Gerrad replaced Dean Smith at Villa Park on November 11, 2021 and lasted less than a year before he became the fourth top-flight manager to lose his job so far this season, following Scott Parker, Thomas Tuchel and Bruno Lage.
Former Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino and ex-Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel are eyed keenly by Villa, but whether the Birmingham club could entice either man to Villa Park remains to be seen.
FIFA Lifts Ban Imposed on Kenya
World football governing body FIFA on Monday, November 28, lifted the ban on Kenya.
In a letter from Secretary-General Fatma Samoura to FKF CEO Barry Otieno, a delegation comprising FIFA and CAF will be deployed to Kenya to define the next steps.
FIFA also announced plans to meet the new Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba in a bid to iron out further issues in the country’s sports sector.
FIFA suspended Kenya from all footballing activities in February 2022, after former Sports CS Amina Mohamed disbanded the Football Kenya Federation in November 2021.
This prevented Kenya from taking part in all international competitions. Following the ban, Kenya missed out on three continental competitions including the 2023 African Cup of Nations qualifiers, CAF confederations and Champions League games.
This formed part of CS Namwamba’s key focus when assuming office. On his first day in office, the Sports CS engaged FIFA on a phone call in a bid to resolve the impasse.
“On my first day in office, I engaged FIFA on the phone to commence the process of resolving the impasse that has seen Kenya banned by the world football governing body.
“Government is committed to returning Kenyan football to normalcy in sync with the rule of law and public good,” he previously stated.
In a bid to seal the deal, the Sports CS met with FIFA president Gianni Infantino on Thursday, November 24, to ensure the country was in good books with the Federation.
“I met in Doha today; FIFA President Gianni Infantino, General Secretary Fatma Samoura and CAF President Patrice Motsepe.
“I congratulate Qatar for superbly hosting the world’s most loved sporting event, and commend FIFA for making football truly global,” Namwamba noted.
Ex Harambee Stars Footballer Bonface Ambani Defends CR7
Former Harambee Stars striker Bonface Ambani has defended Man United star Cristiano Ronaldo after the club announced that he would not feature in their league match against Chelsea.
Ambani who played for Tanzanian top flight club, Yanga SC, took to social media saying that many club managers do not know how to handle their ace players.
“Cr7 issue at Utd is a serious discussion. I will tell you for free. 90% of coaches all over the world don’t know how to handle stars in their teams,” part of Ambani’s social media post read.
The soccer legend went on to say that that is one of the reasons why many players in Kenya hang their boots while young.
“Cr7 frustration at Utd,I can relate. Ask top players how they retired from these clubs. I know you’ll come with all theories,but I remain steadfast to tell you the reality.
“Inferiority Complex always crops in. Anyway,it’s depends to how you view it, but bottom line…Don’t tell me etiii Cr7 time is over. Those senior players sio watu wa Ku train daily kama Stephen Mukangai … who is just 20 years.
Nimeenda Shiseno, ” Ambani ended his caption humorously.
Cr7 issue at Utd is a serious discussion. I will tell you for free. 90% of coaches all over the world don't know how to…
Ambani played for Kenya’s top tier club, Tusker FC, between 2004 and 2006 scoring 27 goals in his 26 appearances. He later signed for the most successful indian football club, East Bengal Club.
He helped them finish seventh in 2006-2007 season. The previous season the club had finished at ninth place on the league table.
Manchester United axed CR7 in their squad set to face Chelsea this weekend after he walked down the tunnel early against Tottenham on Wednesday night.
Erik ten Hag decided to banish Ronaldo from the squad for the trip to Stamford Bridge after he left the ground early following United’s 2-0 win against Spurs on Wednesday night.
The Portuguese won’t be involved in first-team training for the rest of the week and won’t be part of the travelling party, instead training on his own at Carrington.
Ronaldo walked down the tunnel with 30 seconds of normal time remaining, as well as four added minutes, and he also left the stadium promptly.
He was absent as teammates celebrated a landmark win under Ten Hag in the dressing room and the manager said he would deal with the incident on Thursday.
Ronaldo was in at Carrington earlier Thursday morning for showdown talks with Ten Hag and the 37-year-old has been told he will not be part of the squad facing Chelsea on Saturday.
The forward made his exit when United had used just three substitutes and his actions took some of the spotlight away from what had been the best performance of the Ten Hag era so far.
A club statement released on Thursday afternoon said: “Cristiano will not be part of the Manchester United squad for this Saturday’s game against Chelsea. The rest of the squad is fully focused on preparing for that fixture.”
The decision was taken by Ten Hag and subsequently backed by the club, who insist he remains an important part of the squad.