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South Korea sack Uli Stielike after defeat against Qatar

Football: Stielike sacked after shock loss

South Korea have sacked Uli Stielike as manager in the wake of Tuesday's disappointing 3-2 defeat to Qatar in World Cup Qualifying.

The Korea Football Association (KFA) said it chose to part ways with Stielike following a technical committee meeting at the National Football Center in Paju here. The decision follows the South Korean squad's humiliating defeat to Qatar 3-2 in Doha in the final Asian qualifying round for the 2018 FIFA World Cup on June 13 (local time), criticized as the "Doha Catastrophe" among soccer fans. They remain second in Group A, seven points behind already-qualified Iran but just one ahead of Uzbekistan.

In Asian qualifying, the top two teams from each of the two groups will advance automatically to the 2018 World Cup finals in Russian Federation.

A former West Germany worldwide, Stielike was appointed on a four-year deal in September 2014, and subsequently guided his new charges through to the final of the 2015 AFC Asian Cup which Korea Republic narrowly lost to host nation Australia.

The upheaval comes at a precarious time South Korea's qualifying campaign.

The KFA have not decided yet who will take over as coach for the final two qualifiers.

Perennial World Cup participants out of Asia, Korea Republic's Russian Federation 2018 qualifying campaign has been far from convincing, losing three matches from eight and in a tussle with Uzbekistan for the last automatic qualification spot in Group A.

"I believe we can produce better results with new people", he said. As for the next possible head technical director, Kim Hak-bum, former Seongnam FC head coach, Ahn Ik-soo, former head coach of the Korean U-20 national football team, Hong Myung-bo, former Hangzhou Greentown head coach and many others were mentioned.

"The operation was successful", KFA Spokesman Cho Jun-Heon told AFP, adding that Son will stay in South Korea to focus on his recovery.