Palmeiras sack Ramalho

RIO DE JANEIRO - Palmeiras have sacked coach Muricy Ramalho following a 4-1 home defeat by Sao Caetano in the Paulista championship on Wednesday.

Ramalho, who steered Sao Paulo to three successive Brazilian championship titles from 2006 to 2008, lasted less than seven months at Palmeiras and finished with a record of 13 wins and 11 draws in 34 matches.

"Muricy is leaving the club because he didn't achieve the expected results," Palmeiras president Gilberto Cipullo was quoted on the club website as telling reporters on Thursday.

Ramalho failed to steer Palmeiras into this year's Libertadores Cup, the top South American club competition they won in 1999, after they finished outside the top four in the Brazilian championship on the final day of last season.

"The team had not been playing well and we thought it was time for a change," added Cipullo.

Ramalho, the fourth coach to lose his job in Brazil's top flight this year, was sacked by Sao Paulo last year when they were eliminated from the Libertadores Cup but was soon snapped up by Palmeiras in July.

Palmeiras, eighth in the Paulista (Sao Paulo state) championship, will be managed on a caretaker basis by B team trainer Jorge Porto Iparraguirre until a new coach is appointed.