‘All Change Please’: The Big 5 Managerial Changes
With some of the world’s largest clubs looking for new managers, Tom Gatehouse looks at the big names going for the biggest of hot-seats in the Premier League
As the summer transfer window looms large, fans will be casting their eyes across Europe in a bid to seek out the next superstars they would like to see pitch up at their respective clubs. Big name strikers, robust defensive midfielders, and nippy full-backs will all have been judged on the merits of the current season, and some will have been mooted by the top clubs as apt reinforcements for their already impressive line-ups.
But, there is another transfer window which is already in full swing; one that will have a definitive impact on the upcoming players market. The managerial revolving door is spinning rapidly on its hinges already this year, and one hopes it has been well oiled, as there are still some massive changes to be made come the close season.
Already, we have witnessed the second coming of the ‘tiki-taka’ sage, Pep Guardiola, who is primed to ride into the heart of Munich, guns a blazing, ready to further enhance the rapidly growing status of Germany’s flagship club. If that wasn’t enough, there is the small matter of the great Sir Alex Ferguson finally hanging up his pack of gum, and ascending the heavenly, Old Trafford stairs to a comfy director’s box. The man to replace him, fellow Scot, David Moyes, cannot possibly prepare himself for the stunning rollercoaster ride that will be his maiden season with England’s most successful club.
And yet, there is still much more to come. It will all start with deposed Champions League winners, Chelsea.
Currently being hauled by the still detested Rafa Benitez, who is leaving his ‘interim’ position come the close season, towards a respectable European trophy and qualification combo, Chelsea will be closing in on a new permanent boss.
All signs point to the return of the most ‘Special’ of ones; the loveably malignant, Jose Mourinho.
Most Chelsea fans will see this as a dream come true, and a possible return to the glory days of consistent omnipotence. There will the sceptics who will attempt to remind the masses of one-track fans of the ‘verging-on dull’ brand of football employed by the Portuguese near the end of his last tenure, but it’s pretty clear that this will fall on deaf ears. Mourinho’s return will evoke such a powerfully positive atmosphere around the club, that the last few months of negativity will be washed away.
Mourinho’s expected exit from Real Madrid will leave one of the biggest managerial positions open. It is a post engulfed in pressure; too much pressure it seems for even the most effervescent and virile of men, Mr Mourinho. He has, it seemed, succumbed to the sinister media interventions and constant uprisings in the squad, and become almost cancerous for the deposed Spanish champions. A master of mind games, Mourinho may see his criticism of the Madrid hierarchy and his own rebellious team as an exercise of victory through perversion, in the context of the release from his contract with Los Blancos. Certain papers have reported that Roman Abramovich is unwilling to pay the enormous release fee for his former coach, and so a termination by mutual consent may be the best way forward for all parties.
Carlo Ancelotti, current PSG boss, is seen as a likely successor to Mourinho, and he certainly has the CV for it. Italian Champion with AC Milan, English Champion with Chelsea, and now, French Champion following PSG’s victory over Lyon on Sunday. The Italian also has a couple of Champions League titles under his belt, and you feel that his appointment at Madrid would be an astute one.
Back in England, Roberto Mancini has finally been put out his misery at Man City. A wholly unpredicted FA Cup final defeat to relegation threatened Wigan, coupled with an unconvincing Premier League campaign sealed his fate. Rumours of City officials working behind the scenes to secure the current Malaga boss, Manuel Pellegrini as his successor, have refused to go away, much to the irritation of the Italian. After the Cup final, Mancini vented spleen, saying,
“You [the media] continue to speak about this for six months and also too much in the last two weeks,”
“I don’t know why the club didn’t stop this because I don’t think it’s true.” [source: BBC]
Although he stoutly refutes the rumours, but the old saying ‘no smoke, without fire’, may be appropriate here, even though Pellegrini has denied the links,
“I have an agreement with Malaga not to talk to anyone and nothing has been agreed with any other outfit.” [source: Express].
If all of this comes to pass, three out of four of the biggest clubs in England could be starting the new campaign with new leadership. It may change the whole dynamic of the league, with United’s first season under Moyes a wholly new frontier, Mourinho’s possible return to his beloved Chelsea sure to herald fireworks, and the enigmatic Man City maybe under the command of a worldly Chilean. What is sure in all of the managerial mayhem is that everyone will be waiting excitedly for the new season!
What does everyone think? Will these predicted managerial changes come to pass? Any worries? Get involved in the comments below!
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