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Zenit St. Petersburg Fires Coach After Failing To Reach Champions League For Second Year

Mircea Lucescu (file photo) was fired by Zenit St. Petersburg.

Zenit St. Petersburg has fired coach Mircea Lucescu after the Russian football team failed to qualify for the Champions League for the second year in a row.

The club said in a statement on May 28 that the board decided on "early termination" of his contract, without providing a reason.

The 71-year-old Romanian joined Zenit in May 2016 after winning eight Ukrainian titles and the UEFA Cup with Shakhtar Donetsk.

His short tenure at Zenit included reports of disagreements with key players.

The team finished third in the Russian Premier League, eight points behind behind Spartak Moscow and one point behind CSKA Moscow.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP