Struggling Hannover turn to Slomka

Struggling Bundesliga side Hannover 96 sacked Andreas Bergmann as coach on Tuesday and promptly replaced him with former Schalke boss Mirko Slomka.

The 42-year-old Slomka, who coached Hannover's youth team from 1989-1999 and was assistant first team coach between 2001 and 2004, has signed an 18-month deal. "I am very happy to accept this challenge in the area where I grew up," said the new man.

Bergmann became the sixth Bundesliga coach to be sacked this season after his side dropped into the German league's bottom three last weekend. It has been a disastrous season for the north German club after their captain and Germany goalkeeper Robert Enke committed suicide in November and now the team has slipped into the relegation zone.

I am very happy to accept this challenge in the area where I grew up.
New Hannover boss Mirko Slomka

Saturday's 3-0 home defeat by bottom-side Hertha Berlin put Hannover in the bottom three after their first game back following the winter break and Bergmann has paid the price for his side's run of seven games without a win.

Bergmann only took over in August after Dieter Hecking, who now coaches Nuremberg, was sacked after just two games but after Bergmann's 16 matches in charge, Hanover had won just four games.

Slomka has been out of work since being leaving Schalke 04 in April 2008, having led the side to second in the Bundesliga in 2007 as well as the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals the following year.