Leicester City have dismissed manager Craig Shakespeare after winning just one of their opening eight Premier League games this term.
Shakespeare took charge of first-team operations in February when Claudio Ranieri was sacked and initially proved a great success, beating Liverpool 3-1 in his first game before then guiding Leicester past Sevilla in the Champions League to book a quarter-final spot.
Three successive victories across all competitions at the start of his reign effectively secured Shakespeare the job until the end of the season.
He successfully steered Leicester away from the relegation zone and was subsequently appointed manager on a permanent basis in June, signing a three-year deal.
However, Leicester have endured a poor start to the current campaign, Monday’s 1-1 draw with West Brom leaving them third from bottom with just six points from eight matches.
The club’s close-season transfer business has also come under scrutiny. Leicester spent an estimated £74million on new players, but Harry Maguire is the only new arrival to have made a significant impression to date.
After thanking Shakespeare for his contribution to the club, vice-chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha conceded that the board felt something had to be done.
Srivaddhanaprabha said in a statement on the club’s website: “Our early promise under Craig’s management has not been consistently evident in the months since and the board feels that, regrettably, a change is necessary to keep the club moving forward – consistent with the long-term expectations of our supporters, board and owners.
“Craig is and will remain a very popular, respected figure at Leicester City and will be welcome back at King Power Stadium in future, both professionally and as a friend of the club.”
Assistant manager Michael Appleton will take the reins for Saturday’s trip to Swansea City in the Premier League.