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SPORTS UPDATE

Gerrard sacked by struggling Villa after Fulham defeat

Steven Gerrard was sacked as Aston Villa manager less than two hours after his struggling side crashed to a dismal 3-0 defeat at Fulham on Thursday.

Gerrard paid the price for Villa’s wretched start to the season, which sees the club languishing just one place above the Premier League relegation zone.

Villa have won only two of their 11 league matches this term and their tame surrender at Craven Cottage proved the final straw for the club’s hierarchy as they axed Gerrard after just 11 months in charge.

Gerrard and his players had been booed off at full-time by Villa’s furious fans after the loss at Fulham extended their winless run to four matches.

“Aston Villa Football Club can confirm that head coach Steven Gerrard has left the club with immediate effect,” a statement said.

“We would like to thank Steven for his hard work and commitment and wish him well for the future.”

Gerrard led Villa to a 14th-place finish last term after arriving from Rangers to replace the sacked Dean Smith last November on a three-and-a-half year contract.

The former Liverpool and England star was expected to push Villa higher up the table this season, but instead he leaves with the club firmly embroiled in a relegation battle.

Gerrard won the Scottish title with Rangers in 2021, ending Celtic’s long period of dominance.

But he has been unable to build on that impressive work since moving to Villa Park, failing to win over the club’s supporters with some lacklustre performances.

Speaking at his post-match press conference after the Fulham game, Gerrard had vowed to save his job.

“I’m a fighter, I will never, ever quit anything whether it’s football or in life. We will see what happens. I’ll continued to fight unless I’m told differently,” he said.

But just minutes after Gerrard had spoken to the media, Villa announced his sacking.

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