Oxford United have announced that manager Gary Waddock has been sacked due to a change in ownership, with former Blackburn boss Michael Appleton taking over.

Waddock has been removed from his post after the appointment of new club chief executive Mark Ashton, who wants to have his own man at the helm.

New club chairman Darryl Eales decided to bring in a fresh board of directors, which triggered the change, after taking over from Ian Lenagan .

"A new Board of Directors is now in place with Darryl taking up the position of chairman, Mark Ashton appointed as chief executive taking over responsibility for day-to-day management of the board's existing strategy and Ian Lenagan taking Board responsibility for the Stadium Development project," Lenagan said in a statement on the club's official website.

"A change in personnel as a consequence of this new shareholding and management structure is the replacement of Gary Waddock by Michael Appleton since Mark Ashton wishes to have with him his own person as Head Coach, having worked with Michael Appleton previously.

"We would like to thank Gary for his effort and contribution through the past months on behalf of Oxford United and to make it clear that this change does not in any way reflect on his performance or capability as Head Coach."

The statement also revealed that the change in direction was needed because of the club's failure to reach the play-offs last season and he felt greater investment was needed.

Appleton has previously had short spells in charge of West Brom, Portsmouth, Blackpool and Blackburn and takes over from Waddock, who had only held the post since March.