Sheffield Steelers sack coach Doug Christiansen

Sheffield Steelers have sacked coach Doug Christiansen after less than a year in charge.

Christiansen, 36, who also coaches the Great Britain side , left Belfast Giants to take over at Sheffield in April.

The American leaves the Steelers in third position in the Elite League and in the semi-final of the Challenge Cup, in which they trail Nottingham Panthers 5-3 from Wednesday's first leg.

It just hasn't worked out and I have not been happy with performances for some time. We are in a results-driven business.

Steelers owner Tony Smith

Captain Steve Goertzen has been placed in caretaker charge of the first team.

Christiansen learned his fate at a meeting with Steelers owner Tony Smith.

His dismissal follows Tuesday's departure of assistant coach Mark LeFebvre to take over as head coach of Coventry Blaze.

Smith told BBC Radio Sheffield: "It's not a decision I've taken lightly because I sought Doug for this season.

"It just hasn't worked out and I have not been happy with performances for some time. We are in a results-driven business.

"I think the team had lost their identity a bit this year and nobody would have expected that. I have to hold up my hands and say 'I made the wrong choice'.

"I'm sure we won't have a shortage of applications for the job but we have to find the right person now."