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Page last updated at 10:47 GMT, Sunday, 10 April 2011 11:47 UK

Coach Louis Van Gaal sacked by Bayern Munich

Louis van Gaal
Louis van Gaal led Bayern to the league title last season

Louis van Gaal has been sacked as coach of Bayern Munich with immediate effect, the German club have confirmed.

The 59-year-old former two-time Barcelona coach had been due to leave the club at the end of the season.

Bayern lie fourth in the Bundesliga and are struggling to qualify for the next season's Champions League.

Van Gaal's assistant Andries Jonker will take charge until the end of the season when Jupp Heynckes will succeed the Dutchman.

Bayer Leverkusen coach Heynckes, who will be replaced by Freiburg's Robin Dutt, led Bayern to the league title in 1989 and 1990 during his first spell as their coach between 1987-1991. He briefly took charge again in 2009 after Bayern sacked Jurgen Klinsmann.

His first game in charge could be crucial as Bayern host second-placed Bayer Leverkusen next weekend knowing a defeat would end their hopes of finishing second this season and leave them only third place to play for.

Last season Van Gaal steered Bayern to the league title and the Champions League final in Madrid, where they lost 2-0 to Inter Milan.

Bayern's chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge explained that there had been "no alternative" but to part company with Van Gaal while president Uli Hoeness said it was a decision which was a long time in coming.

"It all started getting messy when he [Van Gaal] dropped Hans-Jorg Butt and replaced him with Thomas Kraft," he said.

"That brought insecurity into the defence and we could not hold out for much longer.

"Football should be enjoyable, but there has been nothing enjoyable about football at FC Bayern for a while now.

"And to say that he had the players behind him was a myth."

Hoeness carried on by blaming Van Gaal for the recent crowd protests against his own person, saying the Dutchman's opposition to the planned bid for Schalke goalkeeper Manuel Neuer had created divisions in the club.

"The Manuel Neuer issue would never have escalated like it did and we would never have had any problems with the fans," he said.

"Problems were created which were totally unnecessary and which have ripped the club to pieces.

"Louis Van Gaal should consider what he has done."

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see also
Heynckes set to leave Leverkusen
21 Mar 11 |  Europe
Van Gaal to exit Bayern in summer
07 Mar 11 |  Europe

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