Steve King has parted company with Whitehawk just hours after they were beaten 2-1 by Eastbourne Borough.
Pablo Asensio, an Argentinian coach who was King’s assistant and had previously worked with former Brighton manager Gus Poyet, has taken charge for the remainder of the season.
Club president Chris Gargan said, “It’s a result business and, with nine points from the last 12 games, league results have not been commensurate with the level of investment. We are grateful for what Steve has done for the club.”
Eastbourne Borough manager Tommy Widdrington has had a few run-ins with Whitehawk and King in the past and during last season’s Sussex derby Widdrington was pelted with rat poison pellets from Whitehawk supporters after he claimed he saw ‘rats like cats’ in their dressing room.
Widdrington maintained a dignfied silence on the situation at Whitehawk but admitted he was delighted to record victory on Tuesday night thanks to early goals from Nat Pinney and Elliott Romain.
“There is always a bit extra when you play Whitehawk, it is a Sussex derby after all. But at the end of the day it is still just three points and I’m delighted for the lads that they got the win.
“We thoroughly deserved the win. We had a young side out but they stuck to the task. We dug in as a group and I thought we thoroughly deserved the win in the end.
“It is alright assembling an array of ex-professional footballers, we can all do that. But the harder thing to do at this level is to work on a daily basis with youngsters who want to improve and want to improve your club and I have got that in abundance.”
King led Whitehawk to safety in Conference south two seasons ago and took them to the promotion play-off final last term.
This season they reached the second round of the FA Cup before they were knocked in extra-time in a replay against Dagenham.