Chile fire manager Claudio Borghi

Kevork Djansezian

Chile are in need of a new manager after sacking Claudio Borghi following a defeat to Serbia.

Chile have sacked manager Claudio Borghi. The move came after a friendly loss to Serbia on Wednesday, but was building after a slow start to World Cup qualifying.

"They asked me to step aside - that means getting fired, not quitting," Borghi said.

Chile are in sixth place in World Cup qualifying, out of a World Cup spot. They are level on points with the two teams above them, only trailing on goal difference. Still, they suffered embarrassing 4-1 and 4-0 losses to Argentina and Uruguay early in qualifying and have lost their last three qualifiers, two of them at home. The defense has been at the heart of Chile's problems, having conceded 18 times in nine matches, the most in CONMEBOL qualifying.

Borghi's firing also comes a year after Chile's run in Copa America came to a disappointing end in the quarterfinals when they were ousted by Venezuela. They topped their group to raise hopes, but then crashed out, leaving a bitter taste in the mouthes of Chileans.

Making matters worse for Borghi is the high bar set by his predecessor, Marcelo Bielsa. His fellow Argentinian led Chile to the knockout stages of the 2010 World Cup by playing some of the most aggressive and entertaining football around. The transition was not smooth and many players reportedly had a frosty relationship with Borghi, thinking he was inferior to Bielsa and complaining about the difference in styles of the two managers.

There is no word yet on a replacement for Borghi, but Chile has time. They do not play again until March 22, when they visit Peru.

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