18 Dec 2018: Kerala Blasters fire manager after string of poor performances
Indian Super League side Kerala Blasters have reportedly sacked their manager David James after a string of poor performance that saw the two-time runners-up of the competition languishing in the eighth spot with nine points from 12 matches.
James was first signed by the Blasters in 2014 as a manager and marquee player, and he returned in the ongoing season as manager.
Blasters: A glimpse at the Blasters' performance this season
Kerala Blasters managed to win only a single match season, their first one against ATK.
Since then, James' side was in free-fall, losing five and drawing six of their matches.
The heaviest blow was dealt by Mumbai City FC, when on Sunday ,James' team succumbed 6-1 on their visit to the Mumbai Football Arena.
Kerala are presently 18 points away from table-toppers Bengaluru.
Rene Meulensteen: Former coach was sacked in a similar fashion by Kerala
Kerala have sacked their coach in the December-January period twice in a row, having done so last season to former Manchester United assistant coach Rene Meulensteen.
He was sacked after Kerala were dealt a 3-1 defeat by Bengaluru FC on December 31st last year.
Kerala were at the eighth spot when Meulesteen was fired but finished the 2017-18 season at the sixth spot.
Announcement: Mutual respect maintained during the announcement
While announcing their decision, club CEO Varun Tripuraneni thanked James for his contributions to the team and wished him well for the future.
James, too, thanked the club, the officials, and the team for their support during his stint at the club.
He reserved a special thanks for the fans, to whom he's grateful for a memorable experience at the Cochin-based outfit.
Fact: James had an illustrious playing career
James has made 53 appearances for the English national side, and spent seven years at Liverpool from 1992-90, making 214 appearances for the English giants. He started his coaching career at Icelandic side Luton Town to qualify for UEFA's coaching license.