Not all that long ago, Manchester United fans rejoiced in singing ‘Ole’s at the wheel’ in reference to the club legend turned manager.
Unfortunately for all concerned, things can change pretty rapidly in football and now Ole-Gunnar Solskjaer is fighting for his job at Old Trafford following a period of terminal decline.
The Red Devils have taken just seven points from their opening six Premier League games with a goal difference of -4, and their woes were compounded by an embarrassing 1-2 defeat to Istanbul Basaksehir in the Champions League – worsened by Demba Ba’s goal, in which no United defenders are within 30ft of their own half of the pitch, going viral.
Accusations thrown at Solskjaer and his players range from a complete lack of tactical nous and incoherent strategising to below-par performance in the transfer markets and a set of players who, perhaps, lack the required stomach for the fight.
There have been excellent performances too, and according to Sky Sports reporter James Cooper the Norwegian will be given more time in the hotseat.
“From what I’m being told, Manchester United still see Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as a long-term project and somebody who should be given the backing and support to do this job.”
Consistency will be the key for United going forward, and in their next four games they play Basaksehir again amongst domestic contests with Everton, West Brom and Southampton. You would think that they will need to win at least two of those for Solskjaer to keep his job, and best odds of 4/6 in the betting market for Next Premier League Manager to Leave Post highlight the uphill task he is facing.
So, if not Solskjaer, then who is the value proposition in the same market?
|Manager||Club||Date Appointed||Odds to be Sacked|
|Ole Gunnar Solskjaer||Manchester United||December 2018||4/6|
|Slaven Bilic||West Brom||June 2019||7/2|
|Scott Parker||Fulham||February 2019||8/1|
|Sean Dyche||Burnley||December 2012||12/1|
|Chris Wilder||Sheffield United||May 2016||16/1|
Slaven Bilic (7/2)
It’s a classic football trope: get promoted from the Championship, struggle out of the gate in the Premier League and then sack the manager who got you there in the first place.
To be honest, West Brom were poor in the transfer window and it’s no major surprise they are struggling now, and Slaven Bilic would face a tough task shaping the Baggies into a competitive side come what may.
Defeat to Fulham last time out hasn’t helped his cause, and more worrying for the Croat might be Li Piyue, the club’s chairman. He previously sacked Darren Moore despite a healthy win percentage of 47.92% while in charge.
Scott Parker (8/1)
Since Shahid Khan took the helm of Fulham in July 2013, he has sacked five managers – a pretty high turnover by any measure.
So while Scott Parker has crafted himself a reputation as a thoughtful, tactically aware manager, the truth is that Khan is not the most patient of decision-makers.
Victory over West Brom will have helped Parker’s cause, but more defeats in weeks to come may well spell the end of the former England midfielder at Craven Cottage.
Sean Dyche (12/1)
It seems crazy doesn’t it, but Sean Dyche is the fourth favourite in the Next Manager to leave market.
Of course, he may depart Turf Moor of his own volition – his over-achievement in Lancashire has caught the eye of many suitors, but if he was to be sacked you could imagine there would be riots on the streets of Burnley.
Chris Wilder (16/1)
Expectations in football are funny, aren’t they?
Sheffield United were awesome last season, finishing ninth in a campaign that many expected them to be instantly relegated to the second tier, and chief to that success was boss Chris Wilder.
Fast forward six months and Wilder has gone from hero to zero, although it seems as though he retains the support of the Bramall Lane faithful at least following a tough start to the 220/21 campaign.