Buckle replaced by Elliott as Sacramento Republic coach

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Paul Buckle has been replaced by former New Zealand midfielder Simon Elliott as coach of the Sacramento Republic of the second-tier United Soccer League.

Buckle, the husband of NBC soccer host Rebecca Lowe, was hired in July 2015 to replace Preki Radosavljevic and led the team to 31 wins, 19 losses and 21 ties. The Republic reached the playoffs in all three seasons and won the Western Conference in 2016.

The team made the announcement Thursday, saying Buckle’s departure was by mutual agreement. Elliott, who played for Fulham and several Major League Soccer teams, had been a youth coach with the Republic since 2015.

When Buckle was hired by the Republic, he and Lowe moved to California from Westport, Connecticut. Lowe has commuted since then for weekend broadcasts at NBC’s studios in Stamford, Connecticut.

Buckle is a former midfielder for several English clubs and has pro coaching licenses from UEFA and the U.S. Soccer Federation. Lowe has hosted NBC’s Premier League coverage since the start of the 2013-14 season.