Soccer: Sassuolo sack Di Francesco
11th Serie A coach axed this season28 January, 16:35
Di Francesco, 44, got the sack after Sassuolo lost 3-1 at fellow strugglers Livorno Sunday to leave them third-bottom, a point ahead of Livorno and three points clear of basement side Catania.
A replacement has yet to be named for the former Roma midfielder, who joined Sassuolo in 2012 after a disappointing spell at Lecce left the Puglia side unable to avoid relegation to Serie B.
Sassuolo, based in a world-famous tile-making town near Modena, long toiled in the nether regions of Italian soccer before making it into the third division in 2006.
They won Serie B last year under Di Francesco.
A statement on the club website thanked him "for the important work he has done in the last 19 months and for the success achieved which make him an indelible part in (the club's) history".
Four top-flight coaches have been fired this month, two on the same day: AC Milan's Massimiliano Allegri and Livorno's Davide Nicola, both on January 13. Nicola was replaced a day later by veteran coach Attilio Perotti, former boss at Genoa, Siena, Hellas Verona and Bari.
Perotti lasted one game before getting the chop in favour of former Sampdoria and Chievo manager Domenico Di Carlo. Milan's Dutch former midfielder Clarence Seedorf - the only player to win Champions League or European Cup titles four times with three different clubs - took over at the seven-time European champions. Seedorf, a legend for the Rossoneri fans, won two of them with Silvio Berlusconi's team after one at Real Madrid and one at Ajax, Bologna, Lazio, Genoa, Catania (twice), Sampdoria and Chievo have also changed coaches this term.