Watford have sacked head coach Quique Sanchez Flores, just 85 days after he was re-appointed for a second time in charge of the Premier League club.

The Spaniard, who replaced countryman Javi Gracia after four games of the league season, won just one of his 10 Premier League matches.

Watford suffered their eighth league defeat in a 2-1 loss against fellow strugglers Southampton on Saturday, which saw them remain bottom of the table on eight points and six adrift of safety.

The decision was taken after Sanchez Flores met with Chief executive and chairman Scott Duxbury along with owner Gino Pozzo on Sunday, with the appointment of a successor described as “imminent”.

Former Brighton and Newcastle manager Chris Hughton is a strong contender for the Watford job.

“Quique is a man of great integrity and it was clear how much he wanted to have a positive impact, but ultimately results have dictated our decision,” said Duxbury in a club statement.

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“The appointment of a new head coach is imminent, and with nearly two-thirds of the season remaining, we will provide all the support necessary to make the coming months successful.”

Watford moved off the bottom of the table with a 2-0 victory over Norwich on November 8, but the club have since suffered back-to-back defeats against Burnley and Southampton.

Aside from the win at Norwich last month, the only other victory during Sanchez Flores’ brief 12-game tenure was against Swansea in the Carabao Cup.

Sanchez Flores was previously in charge at Watford between June 2015 and May 2016, during which he guided the club to an FA Cup semi-final.

The 54-year-old, who led Atletico Madrid to the Europa League title in 2010, is the third Premier League boss to be sacked since mid-November – after Tottenham and Arsenal dismissed Mauricio Pochettino and Unai Emery respectively.