Which Premier League Managers Could Depart Their Club Before The 2017/18 Season Begins
Posted by Matthew Jones | Published on February 5, 2017
The current Premier League season has been anti-climatic, to say the least, as what was expected to be a season of five or six teams battling for the title, turned out to be a one-horse race of a Chelsea side hardly changed from the team which finished a mere 10th last season. The majority of Premier League clubs believed they had brought in great recruitments, which made neutrals predict the 2016/17 season to be one of true quality. Manchester United and Manchester City were expected to be world-class sides as both clubs attracted two of the greatest managers in football. However, six months into the season the two teams sit 5th and 6th in the league. Almost every club in the Premier League is not exceeding their expectations for the season, so which managers could be disposed of due to their team’s mediocre performances?
Taking over from fan-favourite Ronald Koeman was never going to be an easy task after the sheer improvement shown by Southampton over the last few years, which has seen them rise from League One to Europa League group stages in a short space of time. Southampton fans are used to rapid progress and Claude Puel was handed the task of bringing Southampton to the next level, which their fan-base believed was a real possibility. However, five-and-a-half months into the new season and Southampton sit in 13th position, not nearly as impressive as their 6th place finish in the 2015/16 season. Although the club are in the Capital One Cup final after beating Liverpool, many fans are still unhappy with their league form. Southampton have lost six of their last seven Premier League matches, including multiple poor results against relegation candidates. After just six months, could Puel already be on his way out?
The Croatian took over from former manager Sam Allardyce at West Ham in 2015, enjoying an impeccable first season in the Premier League as a coach with a creditable 7th-place finish. However after a summer window of disappointment and a shaky start to life at the Olympic Stadium, Slaven Bilic’s side have been knocked out of the Europa League, FA Cup and Capital One Cup in the early rounds. Bilic’s men have also suffered 5-0, 5-1, 4-0 and 3-0 defeats in their first few games at their new stadium. West Ham’s best player Dimitri Payet also fell out with the manager and forced a move to former club Marseille in the January window. Many Hammers fans have noticed an arrogant pattern in Slaven’s tactics, as he is not one to change tactics often and constantly falls out with players. Although the East London club are currently 9th in the Premier League, they sit only five points above 14th and nine points away from 7th (their league finish last season). Sam Allardyce was sacked by West Ham for a 12th place Premier League finish, so could the same rule apply to the former Besiktas manager if he slips back down the table?
The longest-serving manager in the Premier League, Arsene Wenger’s 11-year North London reign may come to an end after the 2016/17 season. With contract talks stalling and Arsenal fans losing patience with poor results, including a 3-1 loss to leaders Chelsea and an embarrassing 2-1 loss at home to Watford, there is a possibility that Arsene could turn down a new contract in hope of retaining as much of his reputation as he can. Arsenal are already out of the title race and currently sit just one point above 5th place, which would prevent them getting Champions League football for the first time in nineteen years if they were to finish below 4th. Arsenal fans continuously get frustrated by the same tactics and mistakes of their club, and a fresh change in management may suit many if Arsenal do not finish in the top four.
He was only appointed less than two months ago – yet Big Sam has not won any of his seven Premier League games in charge, losing six of them. Crystal Palace now sit 19th in the Premier League and were on the wrong end of an embarrassing 4-0 loss to David Moyes’ Sunderland this weekend. The South London club are in severe danger of relegation, despite spending £90 million in the previous two windows. However, Sam Allardyce is known for keeping teams up in the Premier League and the chances are that the Crystal Palace board will give Sam Allardyce the 2017 Summer Window to bring in his own players (although he has already spent a lot of the budget on January signings such as Jeffrey Schlupp and Patrick Van Aanholt). Either way, Sam Allardyce has suffered a nightmare start to his Crystal Palace managerial career and some fans will already ask for his dismissal.
Despite results picking up in recent weeks with an impressive 4-0 away win at Crystal Palace and a hard-fought 0-0 draw with Tottenham, it is still not enough to push Sunderland above 20th place in the league. Relegation candidates Swansea and Burnley both thrashed Sunderland 3-0 and 4-1 respectively in recent months, leading to Burnley’s escape from the bottom of the table. However, Sunderland still have hardly left the bottom three all season and look favourites to go down. Although holding on to Jermaine Defoe in the January window was a major boost, Sunderland rely on him too heavily as he has been involved in 60% of the Black Cat’s goals this season. Can Defoe carry David Moyes any further or is the former Manchester United coach heading out of the Premier League?