Soccer-Lee axed by championship-obssessed Beijing Guoan

BEIJING, Sept 17 - Beijing Guoan fired their
Korean coach Lee Jang-soo in hopes the move could revive their
chances of winning their first Chinese Super League (CSL)
title, local media reported.

The sacking follows Beijing's 2-0 loss to Changchun Yatai
on Tuesday, their first home defeat in 2009, with seven matches
remaining this season.

Beijing had led the league, but with several draws and
disappointing defeats after the summer break they fell to third
with 36 points, two points behind the leaders Henan Jianye.

"The club did this for the good of the team," Guoan
president Luo Ning told the Soccer News. "We heard the call of
media and fans.

"We made the decision after careful consideration. It could
be good or bad, but anyway it is our attempt to make a change."

Veteran coach Hong Yuanshuo was named temporary manager
until the end of the season.

Nicknamed "Iron Face", the 52-year-old Lee won the CFA
Coach of the Year award in 2000 when guiding Chongqing Lifan.
He took charge of the capital club in Dec. 2006.

"I was only informed by the club last night," Lee told
Thursday's Korean newspaper, Sports Seoul

"The executives of the club had been always intervening in
my decisions. And I always rejected.

"The final result is I am fired."

(Reporting by Liu Zhen and Nick Mulvenney; Editing by Greg
Stutchbury; To query or comment on this story email