Brighton manager Gus Poyet has been suspended by the npower Championship club along with assistant manager Mauricio Taricco and first-team coach Charlie Oatway.
Brighton confirmed the news in a statement this evening that offered no reason for the surprise move, which comes three days after the Seagulls exited the play-offs at the hands of bitter rivals Crystal Palace.
The statement read: "Brighton & Hove Albion has confirmed that it has suspended its manager, assistant manager, and its first-team coach from their duties.
"The club will now follow its internal procedures with regard to this matter and will make no further comment at this time."
Sky Sports News tonight reported Poyet's suspension comes after a clash with the club's hierarchy over the budget he would have at his disposal for new signings this summer.
It was reported in Brighton by local newspaper The Argus that Poyet, who is under contract until 2016, had refused to deal with the retained list announced by the club earlier today due to the fact he could be about to leave his post.
Brighton released three players - Vicente, Gary Dicker and Marcos Painter - while contract extensions were offered to Gordon Greer, Inigo Calderon, Ashley Barnes, Will Hoskins, Peter Brezovan, Adam El-Abd and David Lopez.
Poyet has been linked with Everton following the announcement that David Moyes would replace Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, while fellow Barclays Premier League side Fulham have also been touted as a possible destination.
The Uruguayan did little to dispel the speculation in the wake of his side's painful exit from the end-of-season play-offs against Palace earlier this week, when a Wilfried Zaha double ended Brighton's campaign before a crestfallen Amex Stadium crowd.
"I've not been in this situation but I don't like it," Poyet said.
"It's changed my view completely about everything I was prepared for, so we'll see now.
"I have always said that all the time we keep improving I am going to be at this football club and the day we hit the roof, I'm not.
"Is there something more? Right now I don't know, so I need to make sure I know there is, because if not I am not going to stay forever."
Poyet's suspension comes on the day he was nominated for the Championship manager of the month award.
The Seagulls went unbeaten in April, recording three wins and three draws on their way to a strong fourth-placed finish.
The winner of the award will be announced tomorrow.