William Hill has Mick McCarthy as favourite for the Bolton and 3rd favourite for the Blackburn manager jobs but who will tempt the Yorkshireman most as the managerial merry go round kick starts in the Championship.
Say what you like about Mick he knows how to get a club out of the Championship and he could easily lead both these talented squads to the Premiership this season but who suits Mick best and who will move around after this to fill the gaps.
Firstly Blackburn Rovers…
Some of the many names linked to the Rovers job have included Big Mick, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, former Spain coach Javier Clemente, Terry Butcher, Giovanni Trapattoni, Paul Dickov and Peter Reid to name a few have been unrealistic or just not equipped to deliver promotion.
One name that you would need to whisper in that area of Lancashire is Owen Coyle as an ex manager of their hated neighbours Burnley he wouldn’t be popular and may alienate the unpopular owners even further but again he is proven at this level and could establish Rovers as genuine promotion contenders this season.
That said I think the smart money is on one of the “good old boys” Shearer or Sherwood to get the Blackburn job as the Venky’s are desperate to draw back the glory hunting, disappearing “fans” of Ewood Park and employing one of the premier league championship winning old boys will potentially do this even if its just out of nostalgia.
Maybe Rovers are waiting for Hughes to get his surely inevitable cards at QPR and the prodigal son could return to his old stomping ground…
Now for Bolton Wanderers…..
Mick McCarthy looks the favourite and the two could be a good fit, with Bolton chairman Phil Gartside desperate for an immediate return to the Premiership and with the decent playing squad available to Big Mick at the Reebok he could deliver this as he will get the team organised and hard to beat.
Another name being mentioned was former Manchester United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer who is said to be interested in a return to England, that said he is said to have turned down an approach from Aston Villa in the summer so would the lure of a Championship club be enough to pull him here when a premier league job couldn’t?, although he is said to still have property in the area so the local links could be a factor.
Interestingly one who could build a legacy there is, young Pompey manager Michael Appleton, who has managed to keep Portsmouth afloat with a threadbare squad of kids and free transfers amid more financial problems than Greece and whilst some will point the finger at his relegation with Pompey he has held this position with dignity and who knows what he could do at the Reebok with quality players at his disposal and not having to rob Peter to pay Paul weekly.
Others such as Alex Mcleish, Steve Cotterill and Billy Davies have been mentioned but perhaps interestingly Phil Brown’s name has been thrown in the ring, once big Sam’s right hand man at the Reebok and a promotion achiever with Hull City, could Gartside bring back a former trotter to push for promotion?.
Both clubs will need an instant return to the premiership to avoid financial troubles when the parachute payments disappear as both still have big earners in their squads, so both appointments will be key for these two clubs.
Shearer and McCarthy are my bets….but who knows.