Eight Premier League Managers have been relieved of their duties since the season began, some deservingly, some less so…below I profile whether the chairman got it right or wrong and who’s comes out on top of the sack race.
Di Canio got his P45 in September after a dismal run of four defeats in five league games, also many rumours of losing the dressing room and banning tomato ketchup amongst other things. Gus Poyet was brought in to try and stave off relegation, despite some good wins against Newcastle, Everton and Man City the black cats are now on a 7 match winless streak after losing 5-1 to a far from impressive Spurs side. Poyet this week himself admitted that Sunderland needed “a miracle” to survive.
Sunderland were 20th now 20th
The loveable Ian Holloway left the Eagles in October after holding his hands up and admitting he didn’t think he could keep the Selhurst Park unit in the Premier League after only one league win. Since Tony Pulis has come on board Palace have been much tougher to beat with 8 wins and a draw from the tough Welshman’s south London outfit. With a game in hand and 7 points clear of 18th place Fulham. You wouldn’t be crazy to presume Pulis may just keep Palace safe.
Palace were 19th now 14th
After some embarrassing losses to Man City and Liverpool AVB was dismissed from a high profile premier league job for the second time in little over 18 months, some would argue that the Portuguese manager wasn’t doing too bad a job and currently has the best win percentage of any Spurs boss in the Premier League era, AVB was replaced with the inexperienced Tim Sherwood who looks set to lose this role to the Dutch master Louis Van Gaal. Tim seems to be out of his depth at Spurs, some of his team selections have been strange (his continued selection of Bentalab over Paulinho and Sandro have angered Spurs fans) and the tactical naivety shown by the former Blackburn and Spurs skipper has caused heavy losses to Chelsea & Liverpool. With Champions League hopes fading quicker than an Arsenal title challenge you could see Sherwood leaving N17 in the not too distant future.
Spurs were 7th now 7th
The very odd Vincent Tan wrote to the then Cardiff Manager in December asking him to resign or be sacked, whatever went on behind the scenes of the Welsh club obviously wasn’t all sweetness and light. The popular and quite highly rated Scot Mackay was dismissed just after Christmas by the billionaire Malaysian who stated “Far too much dirty linen has been exposed to the public gaze but, I stress, not by me”, so then Tan appointed Manchester United legend Ole Gunnar Solskjaer who had been manager at Norwegian Molde with some success, since the baby faced assassins appointment in Jan Cardiff have only won two Premier League games and have fallen in to the relegation zone. Without a win in four games and only playing one of their fellow relegation rivals in the run in you would be forgiven for banking on them for the drop.
Cardiff were 17th now 19th
West Bromwich Albion
Scotsman Steve Clarke was chopped before Xmas 2013 after winning only 9 of the previous 41 Premier League games, the loss of loan ranger Lukaku was big for the ex- baggies boss. Spaniard Pepe Mel was brought in to halt the slide, after a winless run of seven games Mel led West Brom to a win over waning Swansea on March the 15th. With games coming up against Spurs, City and Arsenal you don’t see to many points coming their way, games against Sunderland, West Ham and Stoke could keep them up though.
West Brom were 16th now 16th
The South Wales club won their first major trophy in 2012 under the Danish legend Michael Laudrup when they beat Bradford in the League Cup final, the Dane was being linked with big jobs then in February 2014 Laudrup was sacked by Chairman Huw Jenkins after losing 18 of 35 Premiership games after the Carling Cup triumph. Garry Monk was appointed and since then Swansea have only won two of his twelve games in charge. Swansea look like they could get some points out of their remaining games but will it be enough to keep them out of trouble.
Fulham are unique in the fact that they have sacked two managers this season, first the Tony Soprano lookalike Martin Jol after 5 straight Premier League defeats, Rene Meulensteen then followed after just 75 days in charge, since Magath’s appointment Fulham have picked up only four points but after a good away win at Villa they could just be finding some form and with games against Norwich and Palace who knows what the Cottagers could do. Beat Norwich and it could be advantage Fulham.
Fulham were 18th now 18th
Easily one of the nicest men in football lost his job this week, the Norwich press release said that “The decision has been taken to give the club the maximum chance of survival” an odd choice of words seeing as they have appointed a youth coach no one has heard of with no top flight management experience, that said it maybe does show how much Chris Hughton had lost the dressing room that they feel a youth coach Is a better option than him. Hate to say it as Norwich aren’t a bad club but when Tim Sherwood takes that job next season he will be managing a championship team.
Norwich were 17th…who knows where they’ll finish
You have to say on the season so far palace are the winners as they look the most likely to finish the season out of the relegation dogfight but that said if Neil Adams gets a win or two maybe the sacking of Hughton will have been an inspired move.
The losers have to be Sunderland and Cardiff so far as they’ve changed and not improved much if at all…now we have to wait and see who will join them in the dreaded third place.