FULHAM HAVE THIS evening appointed Felix Magath as first team manager in a shock move that left Rene Meulensteen’s position shrouded in uncertainty.
There was no mention at all of Meulensteen, the club’s head coach, in a statement released shortly before 7pm this evening.
Reports later on Friday evening suggested that Meulensteen was still under contract with the Londoners, for the moment at least.
Speaking to BBC 5 Live, the Dutchman indicated that he had been sacked after just 75 days in charge.
“I was told by [chief executive] Alistair Mackintosh. It was very clear and straightforward and open. That’s what happens in football.”
Magath, who has managed in the Bundesliga for almost 20 seasons, receives an 18-month contract.
Club chairman Shahid Khan said: “Felix is an accomplished manager with multiple honours in the Bundesliga and a hunger to replicate his success with Fulham in the Barclays Premier League.
“I’m especially impressed with the reputation Felix has for coming into clubs at difficult times, often late in the season, and lifting them to their potential and beyond.
“Felix knows that is precisely the task awaiting him at Fulham, and he made it abundantly clear that he wants and is ready for the opportunity.”
Fulham are currently bottom of the Premier League following a run of form that has seen them pick up just seven points from their last 10 games.
Khan added: “Our Club has shown promise in recent matches, but the fact is we have not won a league match since January 1.
“Given our form, we can no longer merely hope that our fortunes will finally turn. And with 12 matches remaining and at least four points separating us from safety, we certainly can no longer post empty results.
“Action was required.”
Magath won two Bundesliga titles with Bayern Munich and another with Wolfsburg in 2008/2009. Sacked during his second season with Schalke 04 in March 2011, he returned to Wolfsburg for a second stint but left by mutual consent after eight games of the 2012/2013 season.
– Originally published 19.12