Newcastle, United Kingdom: English Premier League strugglers Newcastle United sacked head coach Steve McClaren on Friday.
He won just six of 28 league games in charge, who are just one place off the bottom of the table, with only 24 point from 28 matches.
His future has been a source of constant speculation since Newcastle lost 1-3 against Bournemouth Saturday, their third successive league defeat.
Former Liverpool, Chelsea, Real Madrid and Inter Milan boss Rafael Benitez is the front-runner to take over.
"After the defeat to Bournemouth on Saturday the club has spent some time considering its position and has today concluded that Steve McClaren's employment with the club will end with immediate effect," managing director Lee Charnley said in a statement on Friday.
"We acknowledge that reaching this decision has taken a number of days and that this has caused uncertainty for everyone involved, in particular for Steve and the players, for which we apologise. However we felt that this time was necessary to ensure the right decisions were reached with the best interests of the club at heart."
Lee Charnley added: "I would like to thank Steve personally for his services to Newcastle United. He is a man of integrity and class and he has conducted himself with great dignity during this difficult time.
"Steve worked tirelessly to try and bring success to Newcastle United. He has the utmost respect of all the players, staff and management and he leaves with our very best wishes and sincere thanks.
"We feel that a change is now needed in order to give the Club the best possible chance of securing its Premier League future. A further announcement on a successor to Steve will be made in due course."