Becoming a manager in the English Premier League is already strenuous enough, but keeping the role is on another level.
The intensity and stakes of every game are immense and any spell of bad form could cost a manager their job and the team a spot in the feared relegation zone.
Through just 11 games, four managers have already been sacked following starts not aligning with pre-season expectations.
Here’s a look at who they are and who could be next:
Steven Gerrard became the latest to get sacked following Aston Villa’s 3-0 defeat to Fulham on Thursday. But he wasn’t the first. Let’s take a look at the EPL managers who have been let go thus far in 2022-23:
Scott Parker, Bournemouth
Bournemouth sacked Parker on Aug. 30, shortly after they had been drubbed 9-0 by Liverpool on the road. As one of the newly promoted teams from the EFL Championship into England’s top flight, Parker had been adamant to have the board release more funds to sign more quality players to survive the league, but that didn’t happen. Gary O’Neil is the current interim coach and the squad has picked up form, but only time will tell whether that’s just a purple patch or a promising building block.
Thomas Tuchel, Chelsea
An educated guess would have led you to this result if you saw their preseason form. After guiding Chelsea to the 2020-21 UEFA Champions League title, the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup in one season, Tuchel got sacked on Sept. 7 after their 1-0 loss to Dinamo Zagreb in the UCL. After spending $310 million this past summer on transfers, Tuchel’s tactics just didn’t have the same effect. His midfield lacked control, his attackers couldn’t break down low blocks and his defenders were leaky too often despite running three central defenders and two wingbacks. Chelsea hired Brighton & Hove Albion’s Graham Potter as the full-time replacement, but backing a manager with that amount of funds only to move on within a week was an inauspicious decision at best.
Bruno Lage, Wolverhampton Wanderers
About a month later came Lage of Wolves, who was sacked on Oct. 2 after a 2-0 road loss to West Ham. Wolves were expected to be fighting for another top-10 spot in the table, but their lack of a quality ball-striking No. 9 and clinical wingers had – and still has – them battling to stay above the red zone. Julen Lopetegui, former Sevilla and Real Madrid manager, came in to replace Lage.
Steven Gerrard, Aston Villa
Similarly to Wolves, Aston Villa was expected to push for a top-10 finish following their recruitment in the last few transfer windows. However, Gerrard’s uninspiring tactics, player positioning and captain decisions have seen a team comprising Philippe Coutinho, Emiliano Buendia, Boubacar Kamara, Jacob Ramsey, Leon Bailey and more also fighting to stay floating in the Prem. Next for the Villans is building under new head coach Unai Emery, who formerly managed Arsenal from 2018-2019.
Ralph Hasenhüttl, Southampton
This one isn’t official just yet, but Southampton reportedly will sack Ralph Hasenhüttl either during the 2022 World Cup break or after the squad plays Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday, Nov. 12, according to The Athletic. Hasenhüttl came into the job in 2018 but never finished higher than 11th, which occurred in the 2019-2020 campaign. The Saints are currently in the relegation zone with a 3-3-8 win-draw-loss record (12 points) after losing 4-1 at home to Newcastle on Sunday. Whichever manager comes in to replace the Austrian will take charge of the youngest average age starting XI in the league.
These managers are facing a spell on the hot seat if results don’t start heading in their favor:
Brendan Rodgers, Leicester City: Expected to compete for a spot in the top-6, Leicester has picked up just two wins in 11 games and is on pace to be relegated if their form endures.
Frank Lampard, Everton: After narrowly avoiding relegation last year, Everton also has just two wins in 11 and doesn’t necessarily have the quality to punch above their weight consistently. If the Toffees can’t improve above 14th or 15th place, Lampard’s seat could start scorching.
David Moyes, West Ham: Moyes and West Ham spent over $200 million on new signings over the summer but only have three wins in 11 to show for it. It could be just a period of adaptation for the squad to gel, but a non-top-6 board splashing that much cash will be expecting results, not a bottom-10 finish.
Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool: Liverpool couldn’t, could they? That’s what we thought about Tuchel and Chelsea – until it happened. But the Reds haven’t looked their best all season and it’s also Year 7 of the infamous “Klopp Curse” where Klopp’s team largely struggles in his seventh season at the helm and ends up leaving. Liverpool’s win over Manchester City may be the big morale boost they needed as their quality is undeniable, but they’re also at risk of missing out on a top-4 finish and a UCL spot.