While the Citizens have denied us a once promisingly competitive title race, a couples of coaches continue to champion their credentials in charge of some of the world’s greatest clubs.
The aforementioned Citizens comfortably lead the title charge, with the neutrals focus switching to a captivating top four battle. A depleted Liverpool side have found themselves amongst unfamiliar company, with Villa & West Ham becoming unlikely challengers for a European tour as the North London battle takes place over ninth in the table.
To choose just five managers in the perceived ‘best league in the world’ is near impossible, as who would’ve seen Champions League winner Ancelloti move to the mid table Toffees, or Bielsa stooping down to the second tier to manage Leeds. You really do have to be the ‘crème de la crème’ to cope in this crazy league.
The league has become even more chaotic this season, as corona has taken hold, with the pandemic postponing games and creating a shorter off-season. With this, the manager has been tested more than ever, both with their man management and squad rotation to navigate an unprecedented schedule. Therefore, today’s blog highlights the best of the best as I take you through my ‘Top 5 Premier League Managers’.
Sean Dyche (Burnley)
Starting with Sean, the Burnley boss has thrived in challenging circumstances at Turf Moor to establish his side as a fixture in the Premier League table.
Replacing Howe at the Clarets back in 2012, it is rare in the modern game to see a manager remain in charge of a side for so long, and his lengthy reign is testament to the incredible job he has done. In his first full season, he defied the odds to return Burnley to the Premier League. An immediate relegation, then promotion followed, which helped give them the financial security to prolong their spell in the league second time around.
Always operating on a tight budget, he echoes Pulis’ ethos on the collective ability of one’s squad, rather than relying on individual brilliance. The peak of his reign at Burnley was undoubtedly a seventh placed finish in the 17/18, taking his side on a short-lived European tour and having a pub named after him in the process. Now, again in a similar vein to Pulis’ Potters, the Premier League would be weird without them, and Dyche has masterminded their security in this division.
David Moyes (West Ham)
Like Dyche, Moyes is renowned for a long spell in charge of a side. However, after an initially torrid time after the Toffees, categorised by short spells in succeeding Sir Alex, Sociedad and Sunderland, Moyes is back to bossing it in East London.
Moyes made a name for himself at Everton, establishing themselves as the ‘best of the rest’ in the Premier League as he persistently placed them in European contention. His efforts were rewarded with the opportunity to replicate the longevity of his tenure at Old Trafford, replacing fellow Scotsman Sir Alex Ferguson. Ludicrously high expectations saw his sacked within the season, and what followed was a real low point for Moyes managerial career.
Then came West Ham, initially a temporary gig to save their season, he resurrected the Hammers, but he wasn’t rewarded with the permanent job. Preferring Pellegrini, Sullivan and Gold soon came to their senses to reinstate him. Once again having the mammoth task of survival, he succeeded and has took the Hammers to new heights this year and the right end of the table. With experience only matched by Mourinho in this league, he is more than deserving of a place on the list.
Brendan Rodgers (Leicester City)
Moving from a man who made a name for himself on the blue side of Liverpool to Rodgers, who was a slip away from supremacy on the red side of Scouse land.
While his spell with the Scousers soured towards the end, he was so close to securing that title that eluded Liverpool for so many years. After sending the Swans to their first ever Premier League berth, he so nearly wrote more history at his next post. Unfortunately, after ruining Gerrard’s send off with a dismal squad selection, and a slow start to the next season, his sacking made way for Klopp’s time in front of the Kop, and he packed his bags for Scotland.
Thriving at Celtic, his continuation of the Hoops’ hold of the SPFL saw him eventually return to England with Leicester. Entering a Foxes side mourning the loss of a popular owner and struggling to come close to that magical 15/16 season, he has arguably established Leicester as part of the top six. A late drop off in form last season delayed a return to the Champions League that should take place this year. With or without the Champions League, Rodgers may never replicate Ranieri’s peak , but he has already surpassed the longevity of the Italian’s success in the Midlands.
Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool)
Next on the list is Rodgers’ successor in Liverpool, surpassing his predecessor and taking the Scousers to both the top of Europe and the Premier League.
Despite struggling this year, Klopp has further established himself as one of the world’s greatest managers, never mind just the Premier League. Making his name at Dortmund, he resurrected a side plagued by previously poor financial management, being the one boss capable of disrupting Bayern’s Bundesliga dynasty during the last decade.
Taking over Liverpool, he found himself rebuilding a side that lost the electrifying attacking core of Sterling and Suarez that took them within points of the title. Operating with a negative net spend in all but one of his seasons with the Reds, he’s thrived under FSG’s often ungenerous investment to be one of the world’s best sides. I know he’s struggled this year, but who wouldn’t with that injury list?
Pep Guardiola (Manchester City)
Like Klopp, Guardiola is at the forefront of the conversation for the world’s greatest manager, with his City side arguably looking better than ever at the moment.
The manager of the Premier League’s first 100-point side, Pep is no stranger to dominating and breaking records in the process. After managing arguably the ‘G.O.A.T’ of club sides with his treble winning Barca team, he became the youngest Champions League winning boss in the process. Brilliance in Bavaria followed, before settling with the Citizens.
In the blue side of Manchester, he has continued his pursuit of numerous records. The aforementioned centurion City side and the first to win a domestic treble to name a few, he’s certainly had a pep in his step at City. He’s on course to add to his trophy collection this year, further justifying his place on this list.
With that, you have my top 5 Premier League managers. It was near impossible to narrow it down to just five, so who would you choose? Does Mourinho’s managerial past merit inclusion? Is leaving Smith out just snobby? Let me know who you think I’ve missed off.
Drop a comment below, or tweet us @FanHub_Football and let me know what you think!