The Ladbrokes Guide to Premier League Managers
The manager is arguably the most important person for any Premier League club. They must be tactically astute, be able to inspire a team and keep a keen eye on potential signings. A manager is only as good as their last game they say, check the latest odds for the next manager to get the boot.
Background matters/doesn’t matter
Premier League managers take all kinds of journeys to get to the top. Some, like Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, has turned a successful playing career into a spell in the hot seat.
Others left their playing days behind long ago to take up coaching roles.
Jose Mourinho worked as Sir Bobby Robson’s interpreter when the Englishman was in charge of Barcelona. Arsene Wenger coached in France and Japan before taking over at Arsenal.
Pep Guardiola made his name during a glittering 11-year career with Barcelona. Learning under the great Johan Cruyff, the defensive midfielder won six La Liga titles and the European Cup.
After hanging up his boots, the Spaniard began his coaching career with Barcelona’s B team. He then succeeded Frank Rijkaard in 2008 as manager of the senior squad.
Barcelona lost just 11 league games under Guardiola’s leadership, as he transformed the club into one of the greatest sides ever seen.
He left in 2012 and became Bayern Munich manager in 2013. The German side won the Bundesliga three times in a row under Guardiola, before the Spaniard moved to Manchester City in 2016.
Pep’s influence was easily seen last season as the Citizens romped to the Premier League title, claiming a record 100 points. This time around they’re looking to retain their domestic crown and secure a first ever success in the Champions League.
After parting ways with Antonio Conte, Chelsea have moved in a new direction by hiring Maurizio Sarri.
The Italian has a unique background in the modern world of professional world. He never played the game at a senior level, and only took-up coaching full-time when he was 40-years-old.
Sarri’s path to the Premier League is at complete odds with Guardiola and Jose Mourinho, both of whom spent their entire playing and coaching careers in the professional arena.
The 59-year-old has developed his own brand of football, nicknamed ‘Sarriball’ by the media. The Naples-born coach got his first big role with Verona in 2008, and impressed with a three-year spell at Empoli.
That saw him courted by his hometown club, and Sarri was Napoli coach from 2015-2018, turning the Azzurri into one of the most exciting and free-scoring sides in Europe.
Sarri and Napoli came agonisingly close to the Serie A title in 2018, before he left to seek a new adventure with Chelsea in the Premier League. Can he take Chelsea to the Premier League title? Check out the latest odds, here.
Jose Mourinho arrived in the Premier League in a blaze of glory in 2004 after spending more than a decade honing his managerial skill.
The Special One got his break when he came translator for Sir Bobby Robson at Sporting in Portugal and then again at Barcelona.
Mourinho stayed at Barcelona for four years, first under Robson and then Louis van Gaal.
After stints with Benfica and Uniao de Leira, Mourinho moved to Porto in 2002.
In a little over two-and-a-half seasons, Mourinho guided the club to the UEFA Cup in 2003 and the Champions League in 2004.
He moved to Chelsea in 2004 and has won three Premier League titles. Mourinho has won 175 Premier League games, winning 589 points.
Sacking managers works/doesn’t work!
With Premier League competition so fierce, teams often make a managerial change mid-season.
It’s always a risky move, but the impetus of a new manager and change of style can bring the desired success.
Opta statistics show that hiring a new manager regularly brings about a significant short-term improvement in results.
Last season, Hull City, Crystal Palace, Swansea City and Leicester City all saw big improvements in results after changing the manager.
Head to over to our manager news pages to find out the latest odds on Premier League manager sackings and more.
Few people thought Leicester City had made a good move when they appointed Claudio Ranieri as manager in 2015.
Though respected after successful spells across the globe, the Italian was deemed to be the wrong choice with Leicester seemingly set for relegation.
What followed was a sporting miracle. Ranieri’s jovial approach inspired the Foxes, who won the Premier League title at odds of 5000/1.
But just 12 months later, Leicester were facing relegation and sacked Ranieri.
It was a controversial move, but it paid off as Craig Shakespeare stepped in and steered the team to safety. Shakespeare yielded a 53% win ratio following his appointment, compared to 20% under Ranieri.
West Ham sacked Slaven Bilic earlier this season after the club won only two of their opening 11 games.
After difficult spells in charge of Manchester United, Real Sociedad and Sunderland, West Ham fans were unimpressed when David Moyes was chosen to succeed the Croatian.
Despite a lack of support from the fans, Moyes has since guided the club away from the relegation zone and towards mid-table safety, so far vindicating the club’s decision.
Frank De Boer
Eyebrows were raised when Crystal Palace chose to hire Premier League novice Frank de Boer last summer.
The Dutchman was given little time to infiltrate his style of football, and a dismal start to the season saw him sacked after just four games.
The Eagles turned to experienced hand Roy Hodgson to try and save their season. And the Englishman is showing what a difference a change in manager can make.
He guided the South London side to a famous win over Chelsea, and their results have improved dramatically with Palace climbing up the table.
Experience trumps youth
Premier League managers vary greatly. Attilio Lombardo is the youngest Premier League manager. The Italian took charge of Crystal Palace in 1998 at the age of 32.
Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe is one of the youngest managers in Premier League history. He took charge of his first game in the top division aged only 38.
Jose Mourinho arrived in the Premier League in 2004, having just won the Champions League with Porto.
He declared himself the Special One, and quickly ushered Chelsea into a new era. In his first two seasons in charge, Mourinho guided Chelsea to their first two Premier League titles.
His divisive style saw him come to blows with the Blues in 2007 however, and he found success in Europe with Inter Milan and Real Madrid.
A second stint at Chelsea produced another Premier League title and another departure. Mourinho is now Manchester United manager, but has yet to win the league with the Red Devils.
Arsene Wenger almost single-handedly pushed the Premier League into a newer, healthier world when he arrived at Arsenal in 1996.
The Frenchman was adamant that a better lifestyle and better diet would produce better results. And he was correct. He won three titles in his first seven years as Arsenal boss.
Other teams have since caught up and the Gunners have struggled against clubs with bigger budgets.
But they remain a force in the Premier League with Wenger still in charge more than 20 years later at the age of 68.
Managing Footballer’s Diets
The lifestyle and diet of a footballer has changed beyond recognition in the last two decades.
Back in the 1980s and even the 1990s, it wasn’t uncommon for a footballer to smoke and enjoy a drink after a match.
But now science has moved the game on, and such traits are detrimental to a player’s performance. A good diet is now crucial to a good result.
Many believe Arsene Wenger is more responsible than any other manager for the shift towards a healthy diet and lifestyle in football.
Antonio Conte became Chelsea manager in 2016 and quickly set about improving the players’ diets.
Given his attention to detail, Pep Guardiola unsurprisingly had some changes when he became Man City manager in 2016.
Football Managers Nationalities
The Premier League has seen managers from all corners of the globe. In the first season in 1992-1993, all the managers were from Britain and Ireland. This season managers from 12 different nations have managed in the Premier League.
At the start of the 2018-19 Premier League season, the 20 managers came from 11 different nations. They include four Englishmen, four Spaniards, three Portuguese, an Italian, a Chilean, a Serbian, one Frenchman, one American, one Welshman, one Irishman, an Argentine and a German.
More than 150 managers from the United Kingdom have managed in the Premier League.
The most successful European nations in Premier League management are Portugal, France and Italy.
Rest of the World
Only one non-European manager has won the Premier League and that honour goes to Chile’s Manuel Pellegrini when he was in charge of Manchester City.
Nationalities of Managers in PL & Most/Least Successful:
|Country||Managers||Games||Wins||Draws||Losses||Points||Points per Game||Win %|
|Republic of Ireland||7||1002||317||261||424||1212||1.21||31.6%|
With the growth of Premier League popularity around the world, many teams now take part in tournaments outside of the UK.Pre-season training starts in July, and allows every Premier League team a few weeks to get their players ready for the new season.Training and pre-season
Having spent the best part of 18 years with Espanyol as player and manager, Mauricio Pochettino holds a strong connection to the city of Barcelona.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is not a fan of the British Christmas schedule. When most European leagues take a break, the Premier League undergoes a rigorous few weeks of fixtures.
Like many of his modern day contemporaries, Man City manager Pep Guardiola is keen to ensure his players are rested and sharp for when it matters.
Guardiola v Benitez v Mourinho
Pep Guardiola, Rafa Benitez and Jose Mourinho are three of the most successful and famous managers in the Premier League.
Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho and Rafa Benitez have enjoyed much success in Europe.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing