Wolfsburg part ways with McClaren

Bundesliga club Wolfsburg have sacked former England manager Steve McClaren, replacing him with Pierre Littbarski.

McClaren, 49, was poached from FC Twente in May after he led the Dutch side to the Eredivisie title last season.

But the Englishman had little success in the German top flight and after Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Hannover saw Wolfsburg drop to 12th, just one point above the relegation zone, McClaren was removed from his post having served just nine months of a two-year-deal.

“VfL (Wolfsburg) have parted ways with Steve McClaren. Pierre Littbarski is taking over,” a statement from the 2009 Bundesliga champions read.

Director of sport Dieter Hoeness said the club no longer had full confidence in McClaren and that the club’s slide down the league prompted the change.

“We were no longer sure that we could work with Steve McLaren until the end of the season with some stability,” Hoeness said.

“We have tried to make things work for as long as possible, but we have lost faith that we can bring success. Following the recent negative results we cannot underestimate our situation in the table.”

“Being only one point clear of the relegation places, we are alarmed. Now it’s just a question of increasing the gap to the relegation places as soon as possible.”

Littbarski, previously an assistant at Wolfsburg, takes charge of a Bundesliga club for the first time following coaching stints in Australia, Japan and Liechtenstein.

And Hoeness expressed confidence that the 1990 World Cup winner can improve Wolfsburg’s league standing.

“We have talked a long time with him (Littbarski) and he has convinced us that he will introduce those measures that are necessary in our situation,” he said.

Littbarski’s first game in charge will be a home fixture against Hamburg on Saturday.