HomeFootball NewsWhich managers are under the most pressure going into the new season?

Which managers are under the most pressure going into the new season?

-

With the new Premier League season getting underway in just over two weeks, managers will again face pressure as soon as the first ball is kicked. Here is a list of the bookies’ favourites to get sacked first in the 2023-24 season.

Julen Lopetegui (Wolves, 5/1)

Upon his arrival, Julen Lopetegui was handed the task of getting Wolves out of the relegation zone. The Wanderers were sat bottom of the table and were struggling to pick up points. But the introduction of the former Real Madrid manager saw the tide change. An average of 1.35 points per match was good enough to push Wolves up to 13th by the end of the season.

However, there have been doubts over the future of the Spaniard. Due to the big spending last summer with the arrivals of Matheus Nunes, Goncalo Guedes, Nathan Collins, Joao Gomes and others, it has left Wolves with potential FFP problems.

This has led to the departure of Collins already – leaving after a year to Brentford – and Ruben Neves, with Max Kilman heavily linked with a £35m move to Italian Champions Napoli. These three players leaving does bring into question the strength of the Wolves side for next season. A slow start and Lopetegui not getting the players he desires could lead to the first sacking.

Paul Heckingbottom (Sheffield United, 5/1)

After taking over at the club as the manager in November 2021, Paul Heckingbottom has taken Sheffield United from the playoffs all the way to automatic promotion. The 45-year-old was in caretaker charge back when the Blades were last in the Premier League, overseeing ten league matches which produced three wins and seven losses.

His relative lack of top flight experience may cost him his job early on in the season if there is a slow start from his side. Even with the season under three weeks away, Sheffield United are yet to sign anyone. There is also a risk that they lose their Senegalese star Iliman Ndiaye, who scored 14 and assisted 11 in 46 Championship appearances last season. If Heckingbottom cannot prove himself as a Premier League manager at the beginning of the season, he could be the first to face the sack.

Steve Cooper (Nottingham Forest, 7/1)

An impressive Nottingham Forest career so far for Steve Cooper has meant he still has his job for next season. He joined back when the club sat bottom of the Championship, but with a playoff victory in 2022 the Welshman got Forest back to the Premier League for the first time since 1999. But an even more monumental feat, after signing 30 players, was how the former Swansea boss was able to keep Forest up, finishing in 16th place.

Despite survival, there were many points last season where Cooper was very close to losing his job. Now with a full season with his new players and as an established Premier League manager, there will be more expectation. Positive results will be needed quickly, or the pressure could mount on Cooper.

Andoni Iraola (Bournemouth, 9/1)

The new Cherries boss is one of two brand-new managers in the Premier League. After a successful three year period at his previous club Rayo Vallecano, Andoni Iraola got a move to England with Bournemouth. The previous manager Gary O’Neil had a harsh sacking from the club after guiding his side to a very solid 15th position.

With the new ownership, money will be there for the new manager to spend. But with his lack of Premier League experience, and having a relatively young squad, there will be pressure on the former Atletico Bilbao defender to get his team playing a quality brand of football. If things don’t start well, Iraola might not be in England for too long.

David Moyes (West Ham, 10/1)

David Moyes is well into his second spell at the Hammers and comes into this season after European success in the UEFA Conference League. The success in Europe covered the cracks of a poor league campaign where West Ham finished in 14th place, having flirted with the drop.

For the 2023-24 season, West Ham need to improve. But they will be without former captain Declan Rice after his £105m move to fellow London side Arsenal. Alongside the league, West Ham will also be competing in the Europa League which could complicate their season with the extra games.

Moyes was close to the sack last season due to the Hammers’ lowly league position – and if that is not improved on early this season then the Scotsman could be the first to be fired.

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.

LATEST POSTS

Ancelotti hungry for UCL success with Real Madrid to go with LaLiga triumph

Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti is eyeing the Champions League trophy to go alongside the club's LaLiga success. Los Blancos confirmed their record-breaking 36th title at...

De Zerbi hails Aston Villa as ‘one of the best teams in the Premier League’

Roberto De Zerbi says his Brighton side beat "one of the best teams in the Premier League" on Sunday. The Seagulls took all three points thanks...

Madueke backing Chelsea for Europe after West Ham thumping

Noni Madueke is backing Chelsea to finish as high as possible after the Blues thrashed West Ham 5-0 in the Premier League. First-half goals from Cole...

Sean Dyche slams VAR for missed penalty in Luton-Everton draw

Everton boss Sean Dyche believes VAR missed a second penalty for his side during the 1-1 draw with Luton Town on Friday night. The Toffees denied...

Most Popular