Bristol City sack manager McInnes

Derek McInnes. Photo: David Davies/PA Wire

Bristol City have sacked manager Derek McInnes after just over a year in charge.

The Robins are bottom of the Championship with just six wins all season. They were thrashed 4-0 at home by Leicester on Saturday, and were knocked out of the FA Cup at the first attempt last weekend.

41-year-old McInnes was regarded as a highly rated young manager after leading St Johnstone into the Scottish Premier League. He was appointed Bristol City manager in October 2011 after replacing Keith Millen.

City were bottom of the table with just one win in their opening 12 fixtures, but McInnes masterminded an eight match unbeaten run which saw The Robins avoid relegation with a game to spare.

With a clear-out of players in the summer and the addition of some big name players, City were expected to do well this season.

Despite an opening day defeat at Nottingham Forest and a Capital One Cup exit by Gillingham, McInnes' men bounced back with two impressive home wins against Crystal Palace and Cardiff City. But they didn't win another game at Ashton Gate until December 29th, and lost seven games in a row. They are also the only team in the Football League yet to keep a clean sheet.

Fans became increasingly frustrated with McInnes chopping and changing the team, yet persevering with out-of-form players and failing to play others.The board of directors appeared to be backing McInnes right up until Friday when managing director Jon Lansdown spoke to our sports correspondent Matthias Kurth.

They gave him funds to sign midfielder Liam Kelly from Kilmarnock in the week. But after today's humiliating home defeat, which left City bottom of the table and seven points from safety, the board decided to act. Lansdown told the official club website:

This is a decision we felt we had to make for the good of the football club.

Derek has been a pleasure to work with; he’s disappointed but he understands the decision.

We want to give ourselves the best possible chance of getting out of the situation we are currently in and we’ve got 20 games to do that.

– Jon Lansdown, Managing Director, Bristol City
Happier times: McInnes celebrates his first home win against Burnley on 5th November 2011. Credit: Simon Galloway/EMPICS Sport

Assistant manager Tony Docherty will take charge of training on Monday.

Former Doncaster Rovers and Nottingham Forest boss Sean O'Driscoll will be one of the favourites for the job after missing out last time around. He will face competition from other ex-Forest managers Steve Cotterill and Billy Davies.