English football club Sunderland on Sunday announced that head coach Dick Advocaat has resigned, owing to a poor start in the Premier League.
“The Dutchman informed chairman Ellis Short of his decision to step down from his role and departs the Stadium of Light with immediate effect,” Sunderland said in a stadium.
Sunderland lie 19th in the EPL standings after collecting three points from eight matches. They have lost three matches and are yet to taste a win.
“I want to thank everyone who has stood behind me. This is a very special football club, with so many great people, but I feel it is the right time to do this — not for me, but for the club,” Advocaat said in the statement.
I have made the decision to go after only eight games as I felt it was important to give everyone time turn things around — like we did last year. I am thankful to the chairman for understanding my feelings and I remain on good terms with everyone at the club,” the 68-year-old added.
“I wish Ellis, Lee (Congerton), all of the staff, players and of course the supporters, who made me feel so welcome here, the very best of luck for the rest of the season. I have some wonderful memories to take with me and I hope I will return to see everybody again in the future.”
Sunderland AFC chairman Short said: “I am truly saddened by Dick’s decision, but I respect him for his honesty and for doing what he feels is right for the club.
“He is a man of integrity and a true football person. He was hugely respectful of the club in taking this decision and he acted 100% in our best interests. It is also testament to his character that he has forgone any kind of a financial settlement, something which is very unusual in football.”
“While this isn’t a situation any of us envisaged being in, what is important now is that we regroup quickly and focus on the rest of the season.”
Assistant head coach Zeljko Petrovic has also left the club.