Mark Hughes. Good Ol’ Sparky has lost his spark for a while now despite the best efforts of various Premier League clubs reaching out to him with their job offers in recent years. He eventually got fired by Southampton who panicked at the thought of heading further south to the bottom of the table. Mark is now marked with the unenviable record of being the first Premier League manager to be sacked twice within one calendar year.
As the saying goes, two kinds of football managers exist; those who have been sacked and those who are going to be sacked.
Which springs the question: When was the last season that all the clubs in the English top division finished the season with the same manager they had at the start?
It just seems it is inevitable that at least one manager leaves his position every season (either by consenting ”mutually” or not consenting but leaving with lots of cash to wipe away any tears).
The answer to our question is season 1965/66. Fifty-Two Years ago. 52 and counting. It must have been a truly care-free campaign because even the relegated (and relegation-threatened teams) couldn’t be bothered with typing a sack letter at any point during the season.
Blackburn and Northampton went down. Fulham, Sunderland and Nottingham Forest all struggled at the lower end of the table (in fact, the nine teams who finished above relegated Blackburn were separated by only four points). Despite this, all the managers who started the season finished it in situ.
It is highly likely that we will never see it happen again, due to the fact that the stakes are much higher nowadays and clubs get so twitchy because of the vast amount of millions involved.
So let’s stay tuned and observe the ”sack race” for season 2018/19.