Steve McLaren has been fired as manager at VfL Wolfsburg, according to news out of Germany, news that may turn out to be of interest to English football fans, particularly with a job opening recently announced in the Premier League. The former Middlesbrough, England, and Twente boss is now available, having been dismissed after less than one season into his stint at the Volkswagon Arena.
At the time of the move, the Wolves sit 12th in the 18 team league, having lost their last two matches. Assistant Pierre Littbarski will take over in a caretaker role.
McClaren, coming off a title in the Dutch Eredivisie, was brought in after Wolfsburg's eighth place finish in 2009-10, a placing that was generally seen as a disappointment. The previous season, Wolfsburg had won the Bundesliga only to see manager Felix Magath leave to join Schalke 04. Armin Veh, the former coach at Schalke, replaced Magath only to be dismissed in December following a disappointing start.
McClaren's appointment coincided with a new round of spending by Woflsburg, expenditures that saw Diego, Simon Kjaer and Arne Friedrich added before the season. Wolfsburg also lost Zvjezdan Misimovic, an important part of their championship winning team, and sold Edin Zdeko in January.
Regardless, Wolfsburg was expected to compete for a place in Europe, with their defensive deficiencies apparently addressed. Instead, the Wolves find themselves in the table's bottom ahlf.
With losses to Borussia Dortmund and Hannover in their last two matches, Wolfsburg sits on 23 points, one point above 16th place Köln. In 21 league matches, McClaren had five wins and eight draws, with only last place Borussia Monchengladbach posting fewer victories. Wolfsburg was eliminated in the Round of 16 of the DFB-Pokal (German Cup), losing to second division Energie Cottbus.