Who Will 'Win' The Premier League Sack Race? Watch Out Jokanovic, Hughes, Benitez And Even Pochettino
We’re 10 matches into the new season and, perhaps surprisingly, the Premier League has yet to chew up and spit out any of the 20 managers plying their trade in the top-flight. However, this could well change after the 11th wave of fixtures take place this weekend as a host of gaffers are under pressure in the dreaded Sack Race.
At the start of the week Slavisa Jokanovic replaced Jose Mourinho as the favourite to suffer the sack first. The Fulham manager can now be backed at 2/1 for the chop following a rotten run of five straight defeats, including last weekend’s crushing loss at home to Bournemouth, and a sixth reverse on the spin to Huddersfield (Monday) could well spell the end for the under-fire Serbian.
To be fair, at least Jokanovic has a win under his belt this season. The same can’t be said of the luckless duo of David Wagner and Rafa Benitez. But, while it’s almost impossible to envision Huddersfield ditching the 20/1 priced Wagner, up in the North East Benitez is in big trouble at the Toon who have failed to win any of their opening 10 games for the first time in the Premier League era. In fact, it’s the club’s worst winless league start since the 1898-99 campaign - 120 years ago - and should they fail to carve out the win this weekend it will represent their worst ever start.
It’s worth noting that each of the last six teams that were unable to register a win in any of their opening 10 Premier League matches went on to be relegated, however Benitez may not be in the dugout to find out if Newcastle experience the same grizzly fate, as a defeat at home to Watford (Saturday) would hurl the Spaniard’s future into severe doubt.
Down on the south coast Mark Hughes is priced at 6/1 to be sent to the dreaded managerial guillotine. The Welshman has registered a paltry three wins from 18 Premier League matches in charge of Southampton, and only one in the last 11 games. Furthermore, he has only one home win, dating back to April, while his goal-shy Saints side have failed to find the back of the net in an alarming eight hours of football.
Few, if any, expect the struggling south coast side to take anything from Sunday’s daunting trip to Man City, although if they are on the wrong end of a gargantuan hiding at the Etihad then the club’s hierarchy could wield the axe upon their beleaguered boss.
Elsewhere, the aforementioned Mourinho has managed to scoop seven points from his last three top-flight games, however a defeat to top-4 chasing Bournemouth would pile the pressure back on ahead of a tricky mid-week trip to Juventus.
Meanwhile, it’s obvious that Tottenham would never sack Mauricio Pochettino but he could become the shock first managerial departure of the season. The Argentine is currently one of the favourites for the Real Madrid job, and should the Spanish giants come calling his head could be turned.
Alternatively, Roy Hodgson is well worth a punt at 16/1, considering he’s recorded only one win since the opening day victory at Fulham.