Aston Villa have sacked manager Dean Smith after their defeat by Southampton on Friday, which leaves them 15th in the Premier League table.
Smith took over as Villa manager in 2018 and led the club out of the Championship and into the Premier League. They finished 11th last season but have endured a slide in the current campaign – the defeat at St Mary’s was their fifth straight loss.
Villa lost key man Jack Grealish to Manchester City in the summer and an array of new signings are still continuing to adapt to life at Villa Park.
Villa CEO Christian Purslow said in a statement on Sunday: ‘When Dean joined us in October 2018 our team was really struggling in The Championship. He immediately transformed the atmosphere and performances and achieved the ultimate success of leading Villa back to the Premier League within the same season – a rare feat.
‘He then secured our place in the Premier League after a tough campaign and took us to a Cup Final at Wembley.
‘However, after a good start to last season, this year we have not seen the continuous improvement in results, performances and league position which we have all been looking for.
‘For this reason we have decided to make a change now to allow time for a new head coach to make an impact. The Board would like to sincerely thank Dean for his many excellent achievements, on and off the pitch, during this time. Everyone knows how much Aston Villa means to Dean and his family.
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He has represented the club with distinction and dignity – universally liked and respected by everybody associated with Aston Villa – our staff, players and supporters alike. We wish him the very best.’
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