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By ESPN Staff

Struggling Ligue 1 outfit Nantes sack coach Eo

NANTES, France, Feb 12 (Reuters) - Nantes sacked their coach Georges Eo on Monday and replaced him with his deputy Michel Der Zakarian and sporting director Japhet N'Doram in a dual appointment.

The move came after the 5-2 home defeat to Valenciennes in a Ligue 1 match on Saturday which left Nantes 19th in the 20-team table.

'I have asked Georges Eo to step down but he will remain with the club,' chairman Rudi Roussillon told a news conference. 'We are 19th in the standings. I said after our defeat to Valenciennes we needed some time.

'After a day spent reviewing the situation, I have decided to make some changes. I have asked Michel Der Zakarian and Japhet N'Doram to work together to help the club out and to avoid relegation at the end of the season.'

Eo, 58, had been appointed in September in place of Serge Le Dizet, who was also dismissed after some poor results.

It is the fifth time Nantes have changed their coach since clinching the French title in 2001. Nantes have spent 44 years in Ligue 1, the longest of any French club, but face a tough battle to stay in the division this season.

In an attempt to improve their results Nantes signed several players during the January transfer window, including former France goalkeeper Fabien Barthez.

Nantes are away at Olympique Marseille on Sunday.