Strugglers Hamburg sack Van Marwijk
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Hamburg fired coach Bert van Marwijk after just 143 days in charge in the wake of Saturday's 4-2 drubbing at Bundesliga bottom side Eintracht Braunschweig, the club has confirmed.

"We were forced at this time to make this regretful decision and we thank Bert van Marwijk for his work," Hamburg's sporting director Oliver Kreuzer said in a statement after the board met on Saturday night.

The 61-year-old ex-Netherlands boss, who steered the Oranje to the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ final, was sacked after eight straight defeats with Hamburg second from bottom of the table.

German daily Bild report Mirko Slomka, who was sacked by Hannover in December, is the favourite to replace Van Marwijk for Saturday's Bundesliga match at home to third-placed Borussia Dortmund.

Hammered 5-0 at home by Bayern Munich in the DfB Pokal quarter-finals on Wednesday, Hamburg have also now lost their last seven league games, an unwelcome club record.

They have the worst defensive record in the Bundesliga having leaked 51 goals after 21 matches and are desperate to avoid being relegated from the top flight for the first time in their history.

The defeat at Braunschweig means Hamburg remain second from bottom, but now only four points separate the bottom five teams.

Van Marwijk was Hamburg's tenth coach in the last decade and only replaced Thorsten Fink in September.