Liverpool have sacked manager Brendan Rodgers after three and a half years in charge.
Ex-Borussia Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp is first choice to take over.
Rodgers was dismissed after Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Everton, which left the Reds 10th in the Premier League, but the decision was made before the game.
“Although this has been a difficult decision, we believe it provides us with the best opportunity for success on the pitch,” read a club statement.
Former Chelsea and Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti and Ajax boss Frank de Boer have also been linked with the Liverpool job in recent weeks.
“The search for a new manager is under way and we hope to make an appointment in a decisive and timely manner,” added the statement.
Liverpool have won only four of their 11 games in all competitions this season, including victory on penalties against League Two Carlisle at home in the Capital One Cup.
Northern Irishman Rodgers, who took over in June 2012, led Liverpool to second place in the Premier League in 2013-14 – were top of the table with three games remaining, before losing out to Manchester City.
His departure came on the day when Sunderland boss Dick Advocaat resigned.
Liverpool are owned by Fenway Sports Group and a joint statement from principal owner John W Henry, chairman Tom Werner and president Mike Gordon said: “We would like to place on record our sincere thanks to Brendan Rodgers for the significant contribution he has made to the club and express our gratitude for his hard work and commitment.
“All of us have experienced some wonderful moments with Brendan as manager and we are confident he will enjoy a long career in the game.
“Ambition and winning are at the heart of what we want to bring to Liverpool and we believe this change gives us the best opportunity to deliver it.”
Rodgers said this week that he was “not worried” about the possibility of the sack, despite Liverpool’s poor start to the season.
After the draw with Everton, he spoke of a “constant rebuilding” job and highlighted the impact of losing “four real catalysts” of his side.
Jamie Carragher, Luis Suarez, Raheem Sterling and Steven Gerrard have left Liverpool during Rodgers’s tenure.
Liverpool reached the FA Cup semi-finals last season but won only one of their final six league games, including a 6-1 hammering at Stoke in the final match.
Rodgers is the first Liverpool manager since the 1950s not to win a trophy in his first three seasons. He finished seventh, second and sixth in the Premier League.
Liverpool spent about £80m in the summer as Rodgers signed Christian Benteke, Danny Ings, Roberto Firmino, Nathaniel Clyne and Joe Gomez.