Bristol's Director of Rugby Andy Robinson tells our Sports Correspondent Matthias Kurth that the season was "unacceptable".
But victory over league leaders Newcastle in the final match at the weekend has set the standard for next season:
Chris Booy claims Bristol Rugby have under-achieved during Middleton's two years in charge. Watch his extended interview below.
Bristol Rugby has issued a statement following the announcement that their Head Coach, Liam Middleton, has been sacked after two years at the club.
Following an initial review by Director of Rugby Andy Robinson, Bristol Rugby has today parted company with Head Coach Liam Middleton.
The Club believes that it is in the best interests of both parties to act sooner, rather than later.
Bristol Rugby would like to thank Liam for all the work he has done over the past four seasons, initially as Academy Manager and, more recently, as Head Coach.
Andy Robinson will now take full control of all rugby matters as the Club strives to reach the RFU Championship semi-finals and progress further in the British and Irish Cup.
Bristol Rugby have sacked head coach Liam Middleton.
Middleton has been dismissed following back-to-back defeats against Nottingham and Moseley that leave the club outside the Championship play-off positions.
He spent nearly two years in charge but there has been speculation over his future since the appointment of Andy Robinson as Director of Rugby exactly a month ago. Robinson will now assume total control of first team affairs.
29 year old Ben Skirving has joined Bristol Rugby from Bath, where he has been since 2009. He has made 18 appearances so far this season and has scored one try.
Bristol Rugby... are making positive strides on and off the field.
Liam [Middleton’s] project to drive Bristol forward is one that I’m excited about and looking forward to contributing to.
To be part of a Club that matches my own ambitions as a player is something I feel very positive about.”
He [Ben] is a widely respected professional who can become an integral member of our squad.
Ben is a powerful ball carrier, a hard worker and gives us plenty of options in the lineout.
We’re trying to build a squad with the right balance of youth and experience – Ben fits the bill of a player in the prime of his career.”
Bristol Rugby has announced that it has signed Ben Skirving from Bath Rugby.
The 29 year old will join the club ahead of the 2013/14 campaign.
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NR: “With Liam [Middleton] and Andy Robinson at the helm, it’s a bright future and a great time to be involved with Bristol."
NR: “Bristol has a famous history and the rugby club is a huge part of the city – I’d be proud to represent them & contribute to the team."