Martin Schmidt has resigned as head coach of Wolfsburg, the club confirmed on Monday.
The 50-year-old, who only took the job in September 2017 following the sacking of Andries Jonker, leaves with the 2009 Bundesliga champions sat just a point above the relegation play-off spot.
"Martin Schmidt has decided to step down in order for a new coach to come in and secure our top-flight status as quickly as possible," said Wolfsburg sporting director Olaf Rebbe. "We'd have liked to have realised this objective together, but we can't change his mind. We have to respect it, even though I have to admit it's a surprise. He was the coach we wanted. Now we'll turn our attentions to the game against Mainz on Friday."
Schmidt oversaw 22 matches in the Wolfsburg dugout, with a points-per-game average of 1.18 (W6, D11, L5). He was the Lower Saxony outfit's fourth head coach in the last two years.
Wolfsburg were beaten by a last-gasp penalty from Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski at the weekend. They travel to fellow strugglers Mainz - Schmidt's former club - on Bundesliga Matchday 24.