Bayer Leverkusen sack coach Schmidt

Leverkusen’s head coach Roger Schmidt reacts during the German First division Bundesliga football match between Borussia Dortmund and Bayer 04 Leverkusen in Dortmund, western Germany, on March 4, 2017.<br />Friso Gentsch / dpa / AFP

Bayer Leverkusen have sacked head coach Roger Schmidt after a poor run of form. The BayArena side have underachieved this season and sit ninth in the Bundesliga after 23 games – they will drop to 10th if Freiburg get a draw against Eintracht Frankfurt later on Sunday.
Leverkusen were hammered 6-2 by Borussia Dortmund on Saturday in what proved the final straw for the club’s board.

“Bayer 04 have parted ways with head coach Roger Schmidt with immediate effect,” read a statement on the club’s official Twitter account. The 49-year-old took charge of Leverkusen in 2014 after impressing during his time in charge of RB Salzburg. He led them to fourth place in the table in his first season at the club, before going one place better in 2015-16.

Leverkusen have failed to build on that progress this season, though, and Schmidt has now paid the price for their poor form. Leverkusen will be looking to get their season back on track without Schmidt on Friday when they host Werder Bremen, before a tough task awaits in the Champions League on March 15 as they look to overturn a 4-2 first-leg defeat against Atletico Madrid at the Vicente Calderon.

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