Gianfranco Zola

Former Italy and Chelsea star Gianfranco Zola has been sacked as coach of Qatari side Al-Arabi.

Zola leaves the club after just one season in charge and appears to have paid the price for Al-Arabi’s poor league form.

The Italian, who turns 50 next week, finished eighth in the 14-team league, exactly the same position and with the same number of points, 35, as the previous season.

Zola will be replaced by veteran Uruguayan coach, Gerardo Pelusso, who will become the Doha-based club’s 13th coach in just the past six years.