The Shortest Reigns in Club Management + Who’s Next Up at Sunderland..?

Di Matteo would be a popular choice with Sunderland fans

from Rob Shepherd.

Gustavo Poyet has emerged as the new favourite to succeed Paolo Di Canio in the Sunderland hot seat. Poyet has moved ahead of former Chelsea team-mate and initial favourite Roberto Di Matteo.

Di Canio was sacked after a player revolt following a showdown meeting on Sunday in the wake of Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at West Brom.

It hardly came as a shock given the constant rows Di Canio has had with his players since he took over towards the end of last season.

As predicted in a previous article in BOBBY (look for an archived piece in Now and Then) it was always going to be a roller coaster ride.

Initially the adrenalin rush Di Canio injected with his volatile, impassioned nature gave Sunderland the boost they wanted following the end of Martin O’Neill’s relatively short rein and the threat of relegation was averted.

But the start to this campaign has been disastrous and Di Canio’s power-crazed showboating style of management was destined to hit the buffers.

And when a manager loses control, the respect of the dressing room AND the faith of the fans it’s always going to be curtains.

And so Di Canio’s tenure becomes one of the shortest ever in English football. It lasted 175 days – although in effect it was less than that in the respect that it also spanned the close season.

But compared to the shortest reigns ever Di Canio lasted quite long.

Here BOBBY looks back at those managers who got the axe before getting their feet settled under the table.

FA Cup: Torquay United v Birmingham City
Rosenior: The ten minute man

Leroy Rosenior, lasted just 10 minutes in his second spell as Torquay boss. In may 2007 Rosenior signed on the dotted line. But the club was in the process of being taken over by a new consortium and 600 seconds later the former Fulham and West Ham striker was shown the door.

Back in the late Fifties Bill Lambton last only three days at Scunthorpe.

Dave Bassett lasted just four days at Crystal Palace in 1984 after leaving Wimbledon. The contract was signed but he didn’t like what he saw under Ron Noades so jumped ship and went back to the Dons.

Tommy Docherty was another of the shortest reigns in the top flight; he led QPR for four games in 1968 before resigning following a dispute with Rangers chairman Jim Gregory.

Paul Hart managed a bit better (but only just) at QPR being given the boot in January 2010 after  only 28 days in charge following a bust up with Adel Taarabat. Chairman Flavio Briatore intervened and sided with the player.

Les Reed was given only eight games in charge of Charlton before the axe fell.

Henning never got going at Blackburn

More recently Henning Berg was reluctant to take charge of Blackburn last year and his fears were confirmed. After opting to to take the job he went after 57 days.

Colin Todd got the bullet as Derby boss in 2002 after 98 days.

But the brief reigns of two of the biggest managers of all time remain best remembered and were recently featured on BOBBY FC (This Was The Week).

The 44 days of Brian Clough and Jock Stein at Leeds are still the most remarkable.

The majority of the Leeds squad could not accept the manner in which Clough took over from Don Revie who had been given the job Clough really wanted in 1974 – that of the England manager.

Clough was in charge for just eight games over those 44 days before a players revolt – a bit like the one Di Canio suffered – brought his tenure to an end.

Stein resigned after only ten matches in 1978 to take charge of Scotland.

The Odds

Pulis has recent Premier League experience and could represent good value at 9/1

Victor Chandler offers these odds  to be the next Sunderland manager;

Poyet 1/3

McClaren 9/1

Pulis 9/1

Di Matteo 9/1

McCleish 16/1

Ince 25/1

Hoddle 50/1

Warnock 66/1

Redknapp 66/1



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