LONDON (AP)Steven Gerrard’s tenure as Aston Villa manager ended after a 3-0 loss to Fulham on Thursday.
Villa said Gerrard ”left the club with immediate effect” following the defeat at Craven Cottage.
The announcement came shortly after the former Liverpool and England midfielder vowed to fight on, despite the club’s fans calling for him to be fired.
”It’s tough,” he told Amazon Prime. ”I’m a man, I accept it, I feel their frustrations, I’m frustrated. It was a tough night for me personally.
”We will see what happens. I’m a fighter, I will never, ever quit anything whether it’s football or in life.”
Villa managed just four wins in its last 22 Premier League games under Gerrard dating back to March.
The loss at Fulham left it one spot above the relegation zone, level on points with 18th-place Wolves.
”We would like to thank Steven for his hard work and commitment and wish him well for the future,” Villa added in a brief statement.
The Liverpool great was hired last November in a Premier League return that many expected would eventually lead to the manager’s role back at Liverpool, where he played 710 matches – many as captain – and is widely regarded as one of its best players.
The 42-year-old Gerrard joined Villa after a 3+-year stint in Scottish soccer where as a first-time head coach he transformed the fortunes of Rangers and ended the long-time dominance of Glasgow rival Celtic.
Villa finished in 14th place last season.
The former England midfielder played 17 seasons for Liverpool and retired as a player in 2016 after 1+ seasons with the LA Galaxy of Major League Soccer.
Gerrard’s former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers offered his sympathy.
Rodgers managed Gerrard at Liverpool, of course.
”I’m bitterly disappointed for Steven, he did a fantastic job at Rangers and the ambitions at Villa, I assume, are to be challenging for Europe,” he said. ”I believe with time and patience he could have got to where that football club wants to go.”
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