So, how many of these managerial appointments do you remember? Cue music…
1. Martin O’Neill
- Leicester City (1996/97 – 1999/00)
- Aston Villa (2006/07 – 2010/11)
- Sunderland (2011/12 – 2012/13)
O’Neill’s highest league position was 6th with Aston Villa which remarkably he achieved for three consecutive seasons from 2007/08 to 2009/10. His highest position with Leicester was 9th.
2. Malky McKay
- Cardiff City (2013/14)
Having achieved promotion as champions the previous season, McKay was ungratefully sacked five months into his first Premier League season. His replacement Ole Gunnar Solskjaer failed to arrest the decline and Cardiff finished 20th and were relegated.
3. Gary Megson
- Norwich City (1994/95)
- West Bromwich Albion (2002/03, 2004/05)
- Bolton Wanderers (2007/08 – 2009/10)
Megson’s best finish in the Premier League was 13th with Bolton in 2008/09.
4. John Deehan
- Norwich City (1993/94 – 1994/95)
Having replaced Mike Walker in January, Deehan led the Canaries to very respectable 12th in his first season. Unfortunately, after a promising start to 1994/95, things went a bit ovoid after Christmas. Amazingly, despite being 11th on 23rd March after a victory over Ipswich Town, a disastrous slump to 20th – via a panicked Megson appointment – happened all too quickly. We hope to never see that again. On a happier note, Deehan’s team played some great stuff over that period, but sometimes it just don’t go your way…. Tut. Onwards and upwards!
5. Joe Royle
- Everton (1994/95 – 1996/97)
- Oldham Athletic (2008/09)
The ever-popular Royle (and former NCFC Player of the Year) propelled Everton to 6th in 1995/96.
6. Dave Watson
- Everton (1996/97)
Taking over as ‘acting manager’ from Royle, the ever-reliable and cultured Dave Watson led Everton to safety with a 15th place finish.
7. Scott Parker
- Fulham (2019/20)
Claudio Ranieri was replaced by ex-Canaries loanee Parker in February, but he failed to stop relegation with Fulham finishing in 19th place.
8. Steve Bruce
- Birmingham City (2002/03 – 2005/06, 2007/08)
- Wigan Athletic (2007/08 – 2008/09)
- Sunderland (2009/10 – 2011/12)
- Hull City (2013/14 – 2014/15, 2016/17)
- Newcastle United (2019/20)
The competent and much-travelled Bruce achieved his best top division finish of 10th with Birmingham City in 2003/04. A feat he repeated with Sunderland in 2010/11.
9. Mike Phelan
- Hull City (2016-17)
Phelan replaced Bruce in October and managed the Tigers for three-and-a-half months. Subsequent appointments failed to save Hull and they finished 18th and were relegated.
10. Tim Sherwood
- Tottenham Hotspur (2013/14)
- Aston Villa (2014/15 – 2015/16)
(Excellent ex-NCFC midfielder) Sherwood replaced unpopular Andre Villas-Boas as manager at White Hart Lane in December 2013 and guided Spurs to a pretty acceptable 6th place before being replaced by Mauricio Pochettino.
In summary; many have tried, some have failed, and some have succeeded. Management is difficult, inevitably temporary, and rarely fully appreciated. Glory and failure are near and constant companions. In the words of dear old Greavsie, ‘It’s a funny old game’.
But who will be the next Carrow Road old boy (or girl) to make into a Premiership hotseat (hopefully with NCFC)? Mark Robins? Ian Culverhouse? Even Megson – again! Who knows? (The smart money’s on Steve Bruce carving a notch on another chairman’s goalpost sooner or later.)
Anyway, there’s one more chirpy potential fact to clarify, and it’s a bonus answer! (Possibly)
‘Ooh, who is this person?’ you might ask. Well…
11. Harry Redknapp.
I’m sure I read somewhere that Redknapp (who managed West Ham, Portsmouth, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, and Queens Park Rangers in the Premier League) was once a loan player to Norwich for a short period in the early 1970s?
Perhaps someone could corroborate and share the info?
Best wishes all.