Five Premier League managers have left their posts so far this season…
Aston Villa finally put manager Paul Lambert out of his misery on Wednesday night, as the Scotsman became the fifth Premier League boss in just six and a half weeks to either be sacked or resign from his position.
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Lambert’s departure follows those of Harry Redknapp, Alan Pardew, Alan Irvine and Neil Warnock from Queens Park Rangers, Newcastle United, West Bromwich Albion and Crystal Palace respectively. So who will be next?
The January transfer window has been and gone and the games are running out, so anyone brought in now won’t have any opportunity to put their own stamp on the side. They will have to act quickly and get the results straight away.
With that in mind, the natural instinct is to look towards the bottom of the table. Leicester City’s Nigel Pearson is the obvious favourite – following his side’s latest run of four straight defeats, which has left the Foxes five points adrift of safety.
Pearson’s future was recently cast into further doubt by a touchline brawl with Crystal Palace midfielder James McArthur, but after avoiding an FA charge and receiving the backing of the club’s chairman, he appears to have been granted a stay of execution.
Moving up the table, we find Burnley. It’s hard to see the Clarets disposing of Sean Dyche, who has done a wonderful job of keeping his side within touching distance of Premier League safety. Dyche has been linked with the Villa job, but any move would come as a huge surprise.
Hull City and Sunderland are the only other two teams in the bottom eight yet to change their manager this season, but the pressure on Steve Bruce will have been eased by four points from their last two games – a draw against Man City and a win over Aston Villa.
Gus Poyet is the man to fear for. He’s spent a lot of money putting together his team, bringing in eight players in the last two transfer windows alone, without significantly changing the fortunes of the side. Only Villa have scored less goals this season, while a humiliating 2-0 loss at home to managerless QPR will have done little to boost their confidence.
As far as an outside bet goes, don’t discount Everton’s Roberto Martinez. The Toffees have a history of standing by their managers, but their Premier League form has been woeful this season, while the club record addition of Romelu Lukaku is yet to pay dividends.
How many more dominoes will tumble this season? Only time will tell…