Everyone knows the game of football has changed over the last two decades. It is now a business. Gone are the days of long term managers...
60. The number of managers to have left or been sacked by their clubs this season. The highest rate in ten years. Is there too much pressure on managers to achieve instant success these days?
Everyone knows that the game of football has changed over the last two decades. It is now a business. Gone are the days of managers staying with one club year after year. If the hierarchy don’t believe you’re achieving, then that’s the end of the road.
Out of the top 20 longest serving managers in the top four divisions in England, the average time spent at a club is just 5.9 seasons. And bear in mind this list includes Sir Alex Ferguson who has been at Manchester United for 25 seasons and Arsene Wenger who joined Arsenal in 1996.
If you were to take them off the list, the average time spent at football clubs by the top twenty managers would be down to just 4.1 seasons.
Compare this with the all time top 20 longest serving managers, the average time spent at a club is a staggering 29.3 years. It’s fair to say that those days are long gone.
How much does the current financial implication of failure in football have to do with how little time managers get to impress at football clubs? It is probably the biggest factor.
Arguably the league that puts most pressure on a club and its manager is the Championship. You are just one short step away from the Premiership, but also it’s a small spiral down to League One.
So the desire from club chairmen and directors could arguably be greater than that in other leagues, therefore leading to more managerial casualties.
Statistics back this up; the average duration spent at a club in the Championship by managers is 1.49 seasons, the lowest average out of the top four divisions.
It would be fair to say that on the whole, success guarantees you your job. But what defines success?
For poor Carlo Ancelotti at Chelsea it seemed nothing but top honours would save him. After taking over in 2009, Ancelotti led Chelsea to their first Premier League title in 4 years as well as winning the FA Cup and the Community Shield. All this in his first season at the club.
And although his second season in charge didn’t bring any silverware, he did lead them to a credible 2nd in the Premier League and to the Champions League Quarter Final.
Despite these successful two seasons, Roman Abramovich decided it still wasn’t good enough and Ancelotti was told to pack his bags.
How are clubs meant to stabilise and move forward when managers are coming and going? Surely it makes it more difficult for the players to perform and stay together as a group?
A change of manager is surely the right option if they have had plenty of time to prove themselves and had the chance to implement their plans and it still isn’t working out. But it seems they don’t even get that long in this day and age.
60 managers gone this season, what are the chances of that number being higher next? Only time will tell.