Tag Archives: Sean Dyche

The Watford managerial merry-go-round continues

The sacking of Nigel Pearson was a huge surprise in terms of timing – however very few fans were surprised it happened, considering Watford’s past record.

We all know by now how they club have dismissed coach after coach, with none of them lasting over a year. The only exception is Malky Mackay who led to club from June 2009 to June 2011.

An astonishing trend

Nigel Pearson is unfortunately just one name in a list of victims to feel the wrath of the Watford board. Ever since Mackay left in June 2011 they have been through 11 managers (not including Quique Sanchez Flores twice) and that trend seems to be continuing.

Sean Dyche, Gianfranco Zola, Giuseppe Sannino, Oscar Garcia Sunyent, Billy McKinlay, Slavisa Jokanovic, Quique Sanchez Flores, Walter Mazzari, Marco Silva, Javi Gracia and finally Nigel Pearson.

Sunyent unfortunately had to resign due to medical reasons, however, it doesn’t stop this list being thoroughly astonishing.

Sannino, Sunyent, McKinlay, Jokanovic were all coaching the team between August and October 2014 – a crazy four head coaches in the space of five weeks. Jokanovic was signed on a short term contract and after finishing 2nd in the Championship, he failed to agree a new deal and was replaced with Quique Sanchez Flores.

Flores guided them to a mid-table finish and also took them to an FA Cup semi final. He was sacked at the end of the season and replaced by Walter Mazzarri. He was then sacked after finishing 17th and was replaced by the promising Marco Silva.

Marco Silva had a lot of hype surrounding him at the time after almost keeping Hull City up. This was supposed to be a new era for the club.

After a good start to the campaign he was linked with the Everton job. During this period and in the subsequent two months, the team’s performances became increasingly poor (five points from 30 in 10 Premier League matches), with fans blaming his loss of focus with the club as putting them at risk of relegation.

He was then sacked in January 2018 and the circus continued. Next came Javi Gracia  and with that Watford’s most successful appointment to date. Gracia guided them to safety in the second half of the season and remained for the beginning of the next one (18/19).

In that season they eventually finished 11th but were pushing for a European place for large parts of the campaign. They also reached only their second FA Cup final in history but were smashed 6-0 by Manchester City. He was sacked in September 2019 after a terrible start to the campaign.

The season didn’t get any easier when Quique Sanchez Flores rejoined and failed to lift the team’s form – lasting a measly 10 matches.

This is where Pearson comes in. He managed to completely turn the team’s fortunes around. They were rock bottom with zero confidence and Pearson managed to guide them out of the relegation zone.

Along the way they of course ended Liverpool’s hope of an invincibles season with a stunning 3-0 victory. They were seemingly set to be safe from relegation, three points above the relegation places. However, he was sacked with two games to go and with results going against the club, they now sit inside the bottom three on goal difference.

What now for Watford?

Aston Villa pulled off their result of the season as they beat Arsenal 1-0 to force the Hornets back into relegation peril. With their 4-0 defeat to Manchester City ( a team they have an awful record against) they now have to get a result against Arsenal too and hope Villa lose to West Ham – who are already pretty much safe.

Pearson’s sacking caused plenty of outrage between neutrals and Watford fans. His record of seven wins, five draws and 10 defeats from 22 games was very decent considering how the team were playing before he took over.

Twitter was awash with “they deserve to go down for that” messages aimed at the club. As Premier League fans we have all become accustomed to this constant cycle of sackings – but it is something that fans don’t agree with.

According to Sky Sports:

A “frank exchange of views” between Nigel Pearson and Watford owner Gino Pozzo after Friday’s defeat to West Ham was the catalyst that led to the head coach’s sacking.

Concerns over team selection, substitutions and the team’s performances since the Premier League returned to action had already eaten away at relations between Pearson and Pozzo, along with his technical director Filippo Giraldi.

It is understood Pearson still maintained support among a group of players in the Watford dressing room.

However, despite breathing life into Watford’s troubled season – they were bottom of the league, with just one win from 15 games when he arrived – some players were less supportive.

The owners held serious reservations in particular about their team’s first-half performances, with Watford failing to score the first goal in all seven games since lockdown.

Survival seems very difficult for a club who now need, more than ever, a bit of luck and good fortune to smile upon them. Is this karma for the growing number of managerial casualties? Or just a message that constant change can damage a club eventually?

Whatever it is, Watford Football Club are in danger of the drop, and the last weekend of the Premier League will prove hugely significant for the clubs future.

For more reaction to Nigel Pearson’s sacking see our latest YouTube video below:

Who next for Everton?

Ronald Koeman has this afternoon been sacked by Everton following bad results throughout the season, domestically and in Europe, and the 5-2 home defeat at home to Arsenal proved to be the straw that broke the camel’s back, as Koeman is now no longer connected to Goodison Park. However, as the Dutchman becomes the second managerial casualty of the season, there is one question which follows each of them, who will replace him?

Sean Dyche

One manager capable of taking up the helm at Goodison is Sean Dyche. The current Burnley manager, who has already taken three points off Koeman this season, is unlikely to leave Turf Moor where he is having amazing success. However, the Everton job has to be one he can’t turn down straight away. He knows how to work in the Premier League and how to win matches, and Everton is a massive club with amazing talent that would benefit hugely from the 46 year old.

Thomas Tuchel

Another manager could be former Borussia Dortmund manager Thomas Tuchel. The German could bring that boost to Everton, being currently out of work and having led Dortmund to DFB-Pokal glory last season. He is very young and although has no Premier League experience, has helped guide Dortmund to third place last season and into the Champions League. Perhaps he could do well in the English game.

Carlo Ancelotti

Finally, and certainly the biggest name, is Carlo Ancelotti. The Italian has recently been booted out of Bayern Munich, and was seen at Wembley yesterday watching Tottenham vs Liverpool, showing his love for English football. He has proven himself in England and has much more fight in him. He has been European champion three times and so can definitely bring something to Merseyside that can help bring Everton more points and up the Premier League table.

Burnley’s two key players so far this season

A solid start to the season sees Burnley sitting seventh, with seven points from four games, which any Clarets fan would’ve taken in June when the fixtures were released.

A win at Stamford Bridge is the highlight, but a late equaliser at Wembley from Chris Wood was a close second.

Sean Dyche is a big believer in instilling a team ethic, but despite this, there have been some stand out performers in the side.

Jack Cork

A summer signing from Swansea City, Cork has been a revelation in the heart of the Burnley midfield, immediately securing himself as one of the first names on the team sheet.

The former Chelsea youngster has slotted seamlessly into the midfield, forging a partnership alongside Steven Defour that looks to be one of the strongest outside of the top 7.

Comfortable on the ball, Cork retains possession well and it is no coincidence that his return to the club has coincided with a change in the way in which the Clarets play, with a more possession based style being implemented.

Cork is also willing to work extremely hard in midfield out of possession and he is one of the leading players in the Burnley squad when it comes to winning the ball back.

Steven Defour

After a difficult second half to last season, which saw him sat on the bench for most of it, or utilised sparingly on the wing.

The Belgian missed a large chunk of the season through injury and his lack of fitness was evident, but after a full preseason, he has come back into the fold looking rejuvenated.

Defour has been instrumental in the heart of the Burnley midfield, pulling the strings in an attacking sense and being the heartbeat of the Clarets side.

The defensive side of his game has also come to the fore this season, his increased fitness has lead to his defensive stats being bumped up and he leads the way in the Premier League in terms of interceptions.

 

 

1 day to go – Where do Burnley need to strengthen?

With the transfer window drawing to an abrupt close tomorrow night, Burnley still appear to be short on numbers, but with just over 24 hours to go, have the Clarets left it too late?

Burnley have broken their transfer record so far in this window to land Chris Wood, who opened his account in the Premier League on Sunday, netting a 92nd minute equaliser against Tottenham.

Away from Wood, the Clarets have also landed Jack Cork, Jonathan Walters, Phil Bardsley, Charlie Taylor and Adam Legzdins.

However, losing Michael Keane and Andre Gray has meant that the Clarets have almost been forced into the market to seek replacements, which so far they have failed to do for both.

James Tarkowski has deputised for Michael Keane at the back, but has seemingly struggled to adapt to life in the Premier League.

The former Oldham centre back has big boots to fill after Michael Keane’s departure, which so far he has struggled to do, which could force Sean Dyche into a late move for a defender.

Jozo Simunovic has been linked with a move to Turf Moor, as has Lamine Kone, although at this stage, both are now looking unlikely and it would appear Burnley will move forward with James Tarkowski, Ben Mee and Kevin Long as the clubs main centre backs.

You could argue that in Chris Wood, Burnley have replaced Andre Gray, but the contrasting styles of the two players would say otherwise.

Gray’s blistering pace is something that Burnley have missed in their opening few games and Dyche is clearly looking to add that to the group in the last day.

Nahki Wells has been touted for a move, after a bid for Abdul Majeed Waris was turned down and it now looks like Wells could be a Burnley player come 11pm tomorrow.

One area where the Clarets have been weak for a while now is on the wing.

Signing Robbie Brady in January addressed one wing, but the right hand side is still a weakness for Burnley, with Johan Berg Gudmundsson currently occupying that role, but to little effect.

A pacy winger has been something on all Burnley fans lips for years now, but Dyche has never delivered and looks set not to for at least another window.

All in all, Deadline Day could go either way for Burnley.

It looks set to be a quiet one, but should desperation kick in, Turf Moor could be a very interesting place for the Sky cameras to be!