With Burnley FC now well into the search for a new permanant manager and so many names being banded about from day to day, I decided to look into the possibilities of some of the front runners linked with the job aswell as what it could mean for Burnley.
Mick McCarthy: Mick seems to be a favourite amongst many of the fans and his experience in the Championship is among the very best. Whilst at Wolves he had to work on small budgets, all be it not as small as what Burnley's may be, but still a small budget. Even on this budget at Wolves he managed to guide the club back to Premier League. Currently out of work he wouldn't incur a compensation cost which is in Burnley's favour although he's likeyl to want a high wage for his experience. His Yorkshire roots may tempt him to a move back north although with him being a Barnsley lad, we hope he knows this is Burnley, not Barnsley. Mick, being more experienced than other candidates and with a much tougher personality, would be likely to lay down the law to Burnley players and make sure they know who's the boss. This would be a distinct difference the the more tender Eddie Howe who seemed to have a gentler character. Burnley will have to act fast to get Mick as he is widely linked with other vacancies icluding the Bolton job.
Michael Appleton: Current Portsmouth manager Appleton emerged as one of the early favourites for the job and hasn't dropped too far down the betting markets at any point over the search so far. In League 1 with Portsmouth he is working wonders just to keep the club going, but is also picking up good results along the way. With different players week after week and lierally no money to work with, Appleton is showing how good a manager he could be. Appleton is another with northern links which may be a factor in his decision if he decides to move back, closer to home. One thing which may encourage Appleton to stay at Portsmouth is the lack of expectation from the fans in comparison to Burnley. Portsmouth fans are well aware of the problems their club is facing and are over the moon they still have a club, they aren't expecting him to get the club promoted they just want the club to survive. Burnley fans on the other hand are still living off their year in the Premier League and expect the club to be challenging for the top 6 on a minimal budget. Would Appleton want the pressure of these fans over his current situation where he might not even have a job in a few months?
Sean Dyche: Dyche hasn't been the favourite for the Burnley job yet but I believe he is one of the leading candidates. Sacked by Watford after their Italian takeover, Dyche hadn't done much wrong to deserve the sacking except for not being Zola. He was keeping Watford fighting in a tough league and making progress in the right direction. He's likely to still have the raw spirit and fight for football having been dismised rather unecessarily by Watford and if appointed, he would come in with a point to prove to his doubters.
Steve Davis (Crewe): Davis had been mentioned frequently in any discussion about the Burnley job. His work with Crewe has been phenomonal and his ability to keep the club moving forward with all his best players being moved on like a conveyer belt is fantastic. He has experience of working within a predominantly selling club such as Crewe which might put him in good stead for the Burnley job who seem to hold similar values regarding player sales. An older manager, he'd be likeyl to command more respect from the players tha other, younger managers which may come as a much needed kick up the ass for many of the players at Burnley.
Others: Nick Barmby, Micky Mellon, Greg Abbott and Owen Coyle have also been quite strongly linked with the club but for me, none of them quite fit the bill. Barmby, although he did ok with Hull doesn't have much experience within management and is unlikely to come in and stamp his authority down on the training pitches. Mellon has done wonders with Fleetwood with their numerous promotions but how much of this is down to his management rather than the money that the owners at Fleetwood have pumped into the club to buy the players? Abbott has done well with Carlisle but has never set the world alight in terms of what he's done, and with Carlisle fans seemingly happy to let him go, we have to ask why? Coyle was strongly with a return at first, but as expected, board members have dismissed his link to the job after understanding it would be most unpopular amongst most Burnely fans. The term Judas was used strongly when Coyle left, so if he's been Judas once, then why wouldn't he do it again.
All in all, there are many strong candidates for the Burnley job which make it a very exciting time for the club and its fans. The wait to find out who will become the next manager is going to seem long, but fans must trust the club to the right thing and bac the decision of the board.