ATHENS (AFP) - Dusan Bajevic has quit as coach of AEK Athens for a third time in his career after a string of poor results raised the ire of a large portion of already-disgruntled fans.
The final act for the 62-year-old Bosnian Serb as AEK's coach came Sunday when his team suffered a 3-1 away loss to newcomers Olympiakos Volos.
The result left AEK in 13th spot in the 16-team Greek Super League on four points from the opening four matches of the season, Bajevic saying his resignation was the "only solution".
Angry AEK fans threw debris, including a broken chair, at Bajevic as he left the pitch after the match.
AEK announced that until a new coach is found former Albanian international midfielder Bledar Kola will take charge.
The Athens club faces Zenit St. Petersburg away Thursday in a Europa League group phase match.
Things turned sour during pre-season play when angry AEK fans attacked Bajevic after a defeat in a friendly against second-division club Kallithea.
Bajevic has a long history with AEK and as a player he is considered a club legend having helped them to two championships and a Greek Cup during his stay between 1977 and 1981.
As a coach, during the course of three stints in charge, he also led them to four championships and one Cup victory.
He had returned last season and led them to a respectable fourth place finish and a berth in the Europa League.
And yet there was a core of discontent within the supporter base that reviles Bajevic with a passion - simply because 14 years ago he left AEK to join bitter arch-rival Olympiakos.
In January 1997 when a Bajevic-led Olympiakos faced AEK for the first time in Athens he was met with a barrage of oranges, eggs and yoghurt thrown by the AEK supporters who had even printed and distributed fake money bearing his portrait.
When Bajevic, who played for Yugoslavia in the 1974 World Cup, rejoined AEK in the summer of 2002, some fans greeted him with black flags and banners protesting against his return.
During an away match when the team stopped for refreshments, AEK fans pelted him with coffee, sandwiches and chairs.
Bajevic later shocked reporters after a match with OFI Crete in 2003 when he said he had received death threats from angry AEK fans who considered him a traitor. He went on to say that he would "kill anyone who harms my family".
His second exit from AEK came in January 2004, his resignation coming after fans began abusing his wife during a match against Iraklis.
After leading Olympiakos to a league and cup double in 2006, Bajevic returned home to Serbia to take charge of Red Star Belgrade.
He lasted until March the following year when, with his team trailing 3-0 at home to Vojvodina with 18 minutes to go, he walked off the pitch and out of the stadium, never to return.
In November 2008, he returned to AEK.
|Replacing you might not be a great idea! – Buffon grateful for Rakitic tribute|
|Messi closes on century but Pogba must do more – Champions League in Opta numbers|
|Skoko wants Australian coach as Arnold emerges as Postecoglou replacement|
|Everton yet to make contact with Van Gaal|
|MLS Review: Sounders a step closer to final, Crew and Toronto in stalemate|
|Ben Yedder trolls Liverpool after dramatic Sevilla comeback|
|´World class´ Insigne can´t be rested – Sarri|
|I say one thing and you write something else - Angry Ronaldo brushes off media|
|Griezmann needs support of Atletico and fans – Simeone|
|Monaco paid for mistakes in Champions League exit - Jardim|
|We had to rely on personal pride - Berizzo praises Sevilla´s stunning comeback|
|Championship Review: Coleman loses first Sunderland game, Fulham win nine-goal thriller|
|City fans get first sight of local star they crave in Phil Foden|
|Gunes wants more after historic Besiktas Champions League qualification|
|Allegri plays down Dybala-Messi comparisons|
|Extra rest helped Rose shine in Dortmund – Pochettino|
|Zidane: We knew Ronaldo, Benzema goals would come|
|It feels like we lost - Klopp frustrated at Liverpool´s second-half collapse|
|It depends on Foden - Guardiola puts ball in teenager´s court|
|Postecoglou leaves Australia post|
|Ronaldo overtakes Messi in Champions League goalscoring race|
|Manchester City 1 Feyenoord 0: Sterling strikes late as top spot is clinched|
|Sevilla 3 Liverpool 3: Klopp´s side fail to survive Spanish inquisition|
|Borussia Dortmund 1 Tottenham 2: Son grabs winner as Spurs seal top spot|
|Napoli 3 Shakhtar Donetsk 0: Insigne stunner helps keep knockout hopes alive|
|APOEL 0 Real Madrid 6: Record-breaking Ronaldo and Benzema send holders through in style|
|Monaco 1 RB Leipzig 4: Werner brace dumps Ligue 1 champions out|
|Ronaldo breaks record for Champions League goals in a calendar year|
|I wanted to cry with Buffon - Rakitic sympathy for Italy great|
|Defiant Smalling responds to ´surprise´ England omission|
|Neuer ´on schedule´ but Heynckes won´t rush Bayern star|
|Messi contract saga not swaying Barcelona boss Valverde|
|Spartak Moscow 1 Maribor 1: Stoppage-time equaliser gives Russians everything to do at Anfield|
|Besiktas 1 Porto 1: Talisca leveller sends hosts through|
|Mkhitaryan questions leave Mourinho riled|
|Jones out of Basel, Brighton games but Mourinho hopeful on Bailly|
|Conte unhappy with Chelsea´s fixture congestion|
|Pepe tells Ronaldo: Come to Besiktas!|
|Clement expects Abraham to shake off back injury for Bournemouth clash|
|Oddo replaces sacked Del Neri at Udinese|
|Bartomeu hints at January Barcelona signings|
|Emery defends ´responsible´ Neymar from lifestyle criticism|
|Del Neri sacked by Udinese|
|Everton striker Niasse facing two-match ban after FA diving charge|
|Lampard excited by English clubs in Champions League|
|Thiago and Coman back for Bayern´s trip to Anderlecht|
|Dybala hails Messi as ´our Maradona´, wants to play with Neymar|
|Sherwood talks up Spurs as potential Champions League winners|
|Borussia Dortmund on the brink as Real Madrid eye progress - Champions League in Opta numbers|
|Hughton hopeful on video assistance after Brighton denied penalty|
|Klopp staying calm over Salah form|
|Griezmann: I don´t regret staying at Atletico|
|Guardiola dismisses Champions League favourites tag|
|Brighton and Hove Albion 2 Stoke City 2: Gross, Izquierdo extend home unbeaten run|
|Rose in contention to face Dortmund as Pochettino denies ´issue´ with defender|
|Benzema knows he can give more – Zidane|
|I´ve fulfilled my dreams already – Klopp has no plans to coach Barcelona|
|Aubameyang will face Tottenham, Bosz confirms|
|Klopp expects Matip to face Chelsea, Lallana return getting ´nearer´|
|Berizzo looking to former Red Aspas to provide lessons for Sevilla|
|Mangala ready to pounce, but realistic on Man City playing time|
|Mendy injury means Aguero or Jesus for Guardiola|
|Guardiola sends ´big hug´ to ´amazing, so gentle´ Pulis|
|Tavecchio quits as head of FIGC, claims board have refused to resign|
|Benedetto facing Argentina World Cup KO with cruciate injury|
|Shape up! Heynckes reveals demand to Bayern star Vidal|
|Ramos sits out Madrid trip to APOEL|
|West Brom sack Pulis after wretched run|
|Lloris wants Spurs to forget title and focus on top four|
|Pogba no Gerrard yet, says Benitez|
|Guardiola will ´kill´ City stars if they get complacent|
|Ibrahimovic: My injury was worse than people know|
|Icardi like a ´raptor pouncing on its prey´, says Spalletti|