Pressure mounts on Keller
Jens Keller's days as Stuttgart coach appear to be numbered after last night's 2-1 defeat at Hannover left the Swabians in serious relegation danger.
Keller took over from Christian Gross less than two months ago and started with a win in the UEFA Europa League against Getafe and seven points from his first four Bundesliga matches in charge, but their good form did not last long and the Swabians could end this weekend at the foot of the table.
According to local reports, Keller will not get to see the end of the weekend either.
Former Bayer Leverkusen and Hamburg coach Bruno Labbadia is reported to have been contacted to take over in the run-up to next Thursday's final Europa League group game against Odense and an announcement is expected tomorrow.
All Keller could do was blame his players for leaving him in the lurch last night. "I am immeasurably disappointed with the way my team played," he said.
"I have no explanation for how my players did not do what we had prepared. We trained really well during the week and the players were very motivated, but you could see none of that.
"This was a clear step backwards and if we play like this, then we deserve to be where we are in the league and it won't get any better.
"I thought the players had understood what I wanted from them since I have been preaching it to them for weeks now. It hurts me immensely the way things are running at Stuttgart."
There is no pain and suffering in the Hannover camp, though, after the win moved them up to second in the table.
"The atmosphere in the team is simply great," said their coach Mirko Slomka, who is expected to be given a new contract extension before Christmas.