Belgian champions Genk said on Tuesday they had sacked coach Felice Mazzu after slipping to ninth place in the table following a disappointing start to the season.
After losing three matches out of four in their Champions League qualifying group led by Liverpool and winning only six out of 14 domestic league games, Genk said they had let Mazzu and his three assistants go.
“KRC Genk part ways with Felice Mazzu,” the club said on its website.
Leaders Bruges have opened a 13-point gap at the top of the table over Genk, on 20 points, a situation deemed unacceptable by club directors.
“The last few weeks have seen the situation become more and more negative and the club directors no longer hold the view that the coaching staff are capable of turning it round,” the club statement said.
Mazzu, 53, arrived at the club last summer on an open-ended contract after six seasons at Charleroi to replace Philippe Clement, who took over at Bruges.
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Genk lost 6-2 to Salzburg in their opening Champions league match this season and have twice been beaten by Liverpool.
Domenico Olivieri takes over as interim coch while Genk search for a replacement for Mazzu.