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Sports

Huub Stevens named as new Hoffenheim coach

Bundesliga soccer club Hoffenheim have appointed Huub Stevens as their new head coach. The announcement came just hours after the news broke that Markus Gisdol had been sacked.

A statement posted on TSG 1899 Hoffenheim's website on Monday confirmed that the 61-year-old Stevens had been appointed as the club's new head coach.

It also confirmed that Gisdol had been relieved of his duties, along with his two assistant coaches, Frank Kaspari and Frank Fröhling. Stevens has been given a contract until the end of the current season.

"Of course this was a difficult decision for us," the director of football for the Bundesliga club said.

"We showed calm and patience and trust in Markus' work," he added, before going on to say that due to Hoffenheim's place in the standings (17th of 18 teams) the time had come to make a move. He also indicated that the final straw had been Hoffenheim's 1-0 defeat at home to Hamburg on Friday. This left the club with just one win from their first 10 league games.

The 46-year-old Gisdol had been in the post since April, 2013, when he managed to save the club from relegation to the second division. Gisdol is the second Bundesliga coach to leave his post this season, after Gladbach's Lucien Favre stepped down following a disappointing start to the campaign.

The move comes a day after Hoffenheim announced that they had sacked their chief executive, Peter Retting, who was not prepared to support a planned board restructuring that reduced his responsibilities and eliminated the position of chairman.

Stevens' last Bundesliga job was at Stuttgart, where he helped the Swabians avoid the drop last season. Alfred Schreuder (42) has been named as his assistant.

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