Sunderland were the first club this season to part ways with their manager, after Dick Advocaat ended his testing relationship with the Wearsiders. He was brought in to save them from relegation last year, which he did admirably, and such was his success that the Sunderland board persuaded him to stay. There was always the impression that it was an uneasy situation, and so it proved when the Advocaat walked away after the 2-2 draw with West Ham.
It took just a day for the next casualty to appear in the form of Brendan Rodgers, when he was relieved of his duties at Anfield shortly after the 1-1 derby draw with Everton. His reputation as one of England’s brightest young coaches remains relatively intact despite the sacking, and his name will hang like a dark cloud over the managers struggling at present, such as Tim Sherwood and Steve McClaren. Let’s have a look at the leading candidate to be the ‘Next manager to Leave His Post’.
It’s no great surprise to see Tim Sherwood at the head of this market, with Aston Villa struggling at the bottom end of the table. It all started so well with the 1-0 away win at Bournemouth, but it’s been six defeats in seven since then, and they’re staring over the edge of the abyss. Things don’t look too rosy for the next few weeks either, with fixtures against Chelsea, Swansea, Southampton, Spurs and Man City in the next five.
We wouldn’t put anyone off taking the price above, but there are reasons to believe Sherwood might stay on longer than expected in the Villa Park hot seat. He was only appointed midway through last season, and started off by leading his new club to safety and an FA Cup final. Owner, Randy Lerner, stuck with his predecessor, Paul Lambert, for a long time despite dissent from the stands, and he may be prepared to give Sherwood more time. The club embarked on a ‘Moneyball’ style recruitment process this summer, and in doing so, have taken some of the responsibility away from the manager – this could also help to extend his stay. If results between now and Christmas don’t improve he is probably out of the door, but the prices are short enough at this stage of the season, where a couple of good or bad results can change things entirely.
Steve McClaren – +275 with Paddy Power
Steve McClaren comes next in the betting, and his appointment at Newcastle appears to have done nothing to change the reek of discomfort that surrounds the club. The fans are desperate for the owner, Mike Ashley, to leave, the team rarely look interested in playing for the club, and Steve McClaren has endured an awful year. He’s now won just 2 of his last 21 league games as a manager (previously with Derby in the Championship), while Newcastle have only won 1 of the last 19 Premier League games. To make matters worse they have the poorest goal difference in the division, and sit rock bottom of the table.
Once again though, Ashley has shown a determination to keep hold of his man in spite of the opinion of fans – as seen with his loyalty to Alan Pardew – and considering the under-investment at the club, he might be hard-pressed to find a better candidate to take the job on.
It seems remarkable that the winner of last year’s Premier League title is third in the betting for the sack, but then this has already been a remarkable season for Chelsea. Under Mourinho they’ve lost 5 of the last 10 games, where previously they’d only lost 5 in 59. Unbelievably Chelsea have just 8 points from 8 games, and sit 16th in the table. They have too many good players not to turn things around, and its surely a matter of time until they start their ascension up the table. Roman Abramovich has given public backing to his manager, and his dismissal seems highly unlikely despite the start. If things continue this way the Russian Oligarch is sure to take matters into his own hands, but for the time being Mourinho’s previous record will ensure he is given every chance of turning things round.
For various reasons, none of the top three make much appeal in the betting stakes – although Sherwood is probably on the thinnest of tightropes – instead it may pay to think outside the box a little and look at managers who could get into trouble if results don’t go their way.
Ronald Koeman – +1200 with William Hill
Ronald Koeman doesn’t necessarily fall into that category, but his odds have been slashed recently after he was linked with the Holland job. The Dutch have failed to improve since Danny Blind took over from Guus Hiddink, and they failed to qualify for the Euro’s after a sobering 3-2 home defeat to the Czech Republic.
However the Dutch FA have said the job remains his until at least 2016 when they will conduct a review, and Koeman himself has said he is happy at Southampton.
As a flyer we like the look of Garry Monk at an absolutely huge price. He may not stand out as a boss in danger – and in truth he isn’t at the moment – but Swansea are 4 games without a win and Monk has said first team places are under threat. They’ve only won twice in eight games this season, and a poor run of results could easily see them slip down the table.
Equally, the availability of Brendan Rodgers may interest some of the board at Swansea after his very successful spell in charge before the move to Liverpool. The Swans always look from the outside like a well-run club, but it should be remembered that they’ve had six managers in the last eight years, with Roberto Martinez the longest surviving at just two years and 111 days. Monk is coming up to two years in the job, and although it’s a speculative tip, it’s worth a small investment at such a big price.
Garry Monk to be the Next Manager to Leave His Post
Premier League 2015/16
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