Coach Merrick quits as Phoenix sink

Ernie Merrick (Getty Images)

Wellington Pheonix coach Ernie Merrick quit Monday, saying he takes full responsibilty for the side's slump to the bottom of the A-League.

Merrick announced his resignation a day after the Phoenix lost 2-0 to Adelaide United leaving them with only two wins and six losses after eight rounds.

"I take full responsibility for the position the team is currently in," Merrick said.

"I feel that I have not performed well enough as head coach, as we have a very strong squad that should be higher up the table.

"It's therefore the right time for me to step aside and allow someone else to take over."

Phoenix management said in a statement they will undertake "a thorough process" to appoint a new coach.

Merrick won the A-League twice with Melbourne Victory but in four seasons with the Phoenix the side has twice finished ninth in the 10-team competition.