Neil Bonnar: Owners/chairmen who repeatedly change managers are the real failures

THE departures of Andre Villas-Boas and Gianfranco Zola have sparked the predictable furore about managers not getting enough time.

Much of it has come from managers.

They should shut up and get on with it. Sacking goes with the territory and if they don’t like it they should go and get a job in a bank.

We all know the short amount of time managers are given is a joke.

In the Premier League only four of the 20 managers have served more than two years at their current clubs. In the Championship the shelf life of a manager has decreased from 15 months last year to 12 months this.

Is it any wonder the quality of English footballers is poor compared to the rest of the world when they are forever working under different managers?

But there is no point banging on about it. It is the way of the football world. Get over it.

And it’s not as if managers find themselves on the scrap heap when they lose their jobs. Invariably they pick up a very handsome pay-off big enough for the rest of us to retire on and then pop up at another club on another lucrative wage.

Take a look at the managers who are in jobs. They are predominantly the same people we have always seen in jobs. The Mick McCarthys, Sam Allardyces, Steve Bruces, Nigel Cloughs, Alan Pardews... I could go on and on.

They come, they go, they come again. As I see it managers are not so much sacked as relocated.

Which makes you wonder two things: one, what makes a manager a failure one minute and a success the next? And two, how bad are the people who run clubs at recruiting managers?

That latter point is the one which is at the crux of the problem.

Owners and chairmen who regularly change their managers are disastrously bad at running their football clubs. That’s because the manager is the most important person at a club – take Sir Alex Ferguson for instance who could turn an average team into runaway title-winners.

So the appointment of the manager is what makes an owner and chairman a success or failure.

The fact they change managers every 12 months because they have failed means the owners/chairmen have failed.

The obvious answer is for those who run clubs to take short-term failure on the chin and allow managers to manage long term. Give them time.

But they don’t, and one of the reasons is because they invariably buckle under pressure from disgruntled fans into making kneejerk decisions to sack the manager.

And we can moan all we like about this ridiculous situation, but it’s the way of the world so don’t waste your breath.


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