- Associated Press - Sunday, May 17, 2015

ROTTERDAM, Netherlands (AP) - Feyenoord has fired coach Fred Rutten after the team slumped to a 3-0 defeat at PEC Zwolle to finish fourth in the Dutch Eredivisie and miss an automatic spot in Europe next season.

Feyenoord long looked assured of third spot, but picked up just two points from its last five matches and slipped to fourth, behind champion PSV Eindhoven, Ajax and AZ Alkmaar.

Feyenoord said in a statement Sunday night that Rutten, who was due to leave at the end of the season, would be immediately replaced by his anointed successor Giovanni van Bronckhorst for playoffs for a spot in next season’s Europa League.

Rutten joined Feyenoord at the start of the season on a one-year contract. The club announced in March that Van Bronckhorst would succeed him.

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