Bayer Leverkusen and Heiko Herrlich have parted ways, with the club appointing Borussia Dortmund coach Peter Bosz as his replacement.
Herrlich, who took charge of Die Werkself in the summer of 2017, leaves with the North Rhine-Westphalia club lying ninth at the midway stage of the season. His overall record in charge reads 32 wins, 14 draws and 18 defeats, with his side's 3-1 win over Hertha Berlin on Saturday proving to be his final one in charge.
Having guided the club to fifth last season – missing out on a place in the UEFA Champions League only on goal difference behind Borussia Dortmund – a challenge for a top-four finish this season was beginning to look unlikely with seven points separating them from RB Leipzig heading into the winter break.
They have won seven, but also lost seven games this season, conceding the most goals of any club in the top half of the table.
"Last year, Heiko Herrlich gave our team an important boost after a very difficult season and he guided us back into Europe," said sporting director Rudi Völler. "Up until recently, we were convinced that we would turn the corner with him in charge, but the team's development has stagnated... even if we end the year with the European places back in sight."
His replacement will be Dutch tactician Bosz, who spent five months in charge of Dortmund at the start of the 2017/18 season, leading the Black and Yellows on a seven-game unbeaten start to the season, picking up 19 out of a possible 21 points before a run of three points in the following nine matches saw him relieved of his duties.
He has been given a contract until 2020 and will begin preparing the side for the resumption of Bundesliga action against Borussia Mönchengladbach on 19 January.
"Our management team, led by Peter Bosz, will attempt to bring us back in line with our sporting ambitions as quickly as possible," said CEO Fernando Carro. "Now it's up to the team to show the their quality regularly, something which, unfortunately, they didn't do in the last six months."
Leverkusen also face Russian club Krasnodar in the last 32 of the UEFA Europa League.