Gheorghe Hagi is leaving Galatasaray just five months after he accepted the job as head coach, according to various media outlets in Turkey. The Romanian, a former Gala player who had previously managed the club in 2004-2004, took over from Frank Rijkaard in October after Galatasaray lost to rivals Fenerbahçe in the first derby of the season. Once again, a derby loss sent the manager packing: Galatasaray went up 1-0 over Fener in the first derby at their new stadium, but ended up losing 2-1.
The derby was merely the final straw for a club desperately seeking to stop its slide from prominence. Galatasaray have won the SuperLig title 17 times and are accustomed to being involved in European competition. This season, they currently sit in 11th position, a full 27 points behind leaders Fenerbahçe. While it would be near impossible for Gala to reach the European slots this season, whoever is appointed must make sure to, at the very least, stop the bleeding. Assistant coach Tugay Kerimoğlu will lead Galatasaray in their match against Antalyaspor in two weeks.