Football’s appetite for self-destruction has reached new heights during the 2022/23 campaign.
The Premier League had (as of April 3) witnessed 12 managerial sackings – the record for the most top-flight dismissals within a single season.
Two of those came on a Bloody Sunday, April 2, with Brendan Rodgers and then Graham Potter shown the exit door at Leicester City and Chelsea respectively.
Rodgers had been one of Leicester’s most successful managers, guiding them to FA Cup glory and a pair of top-five finishes in the Premier League. But a period of abject mediocrity, exacerbated by the owner’s unwillingness to spend money on new players, cost the former Liverpool and Celtic boss his job.
Potter, meanwhile, was unable to wave his magic wand at Chelsea, where his seven-month tenure was ended following defeat to Aston Villa. His spell at Stamford Bridge was curious to say the least, with millions spent on new players but results on the pitch worsening, if anything. He does, however, have credit in the bank following an impressive stint in charge of Brighton.
Here’s a look at how the 2022/23 Premier League campaign became the most bloodthirsty in the competition’s 30-year history.
There’s only been ten or more managerial sackings in a Premier League season in four campaigns to date.
The first came in 2008/09, and with the other three all occurring within the past decade or so – 2013/14, 2017/18 and 2021/22 – it confirms the notion that football club owners are more cutthroat now than they’ve ever been before.
As if to prove that point, two clubs – Chelsea and Southampton – have sacked two managers in 2022/23 alone, which is a remarkable admission by their respective directors that they made a complete mess of the recruitment process.
Here’s a quick look at all the dismissals during the 2022/23 campaign:
Premier League Managerial Sackings 2022/23
|Scott Parker||Bournemouth||August 30||4|
|Thomas Tuchel||Chelsea||September 7||6|
|Bruno Lage||Wolves||October 2||8|
|Steven Gerrard||Aston Villa||October 20||11|
|Ralph Hasenhuttl||Southampton||November 6||14|
|Frank Lampard||Everton||January 23||20|
|Jesse Marsch||Leeds United||February 6||21|
|Nathan Jones||Southampton||February 12||22|
|Patrick Vieira||Crystal Palace||March 17||27|
|Antonio Conte||Tottenham||March 26||28|
|Brendan Rodgers||Leicester City||April 2||28|
|Graham Potter||Chelsea||April 2||28|
One of the earliest sackings in a Premier League season unfolded on August 30 when Scott Parker was dismissed by Bournemouth after just four league games of the campaign.
In some ways, Parker only had himself to blame after launching into a tirade against the club’s owners following the 0-9 humbling by Liverpool – that has come after 0-3 and 0-4 defeats against Arsenal and Manchester City respectively.
Setting in motion the chain of events that would see Potter hired – and then fired – as Chelsea boss, Thomas Tuchel was shown his marching orders from Stamford Bridge next despite guiding the club to Champions League glory. Rumours of a fall-out with new owner Todd Boehly hardly helping the German’s cause.
Former Wolves boss Bruno Lage was dismissed in October after three consecutive losses – his side had only scored three goals in their prior nine games into the bargain, while across the West Midlands it was Steven Gerrard who was the next in the firing line despite a bright start at Aston Villa.
Into November, Ralph Hasenhuttl would pay the price for a run of just one win in nine games at Southampton – the final Premier League sacking of 2022.
If anyone was predicting a quieter second half of the season, they were oh so wrong. Frank Lampard’s reign at Everton came to an end in January after a run of one win in 12, while barely a fortnight later Jesse Marsch was shown the door at similarly relegation-threatened Leeds United.
Nathan Jones’ reign at Southampton was one of this shortest in Premier League history – he was in charge for just eight games prior to being sacked in February, and it wasn’t long before the threat of demotion kicked in elsewhere: Crystal Palace showing Patrick Vieira the door in March.
Antonio Conte effectively sacked himself as Tottenham boss following his extraordinary outburst after a 3-3 draw with Southampton in which he described his players as ‘selfish’ and lacking heart. The Italian copped a nice payout, so maybe he knew what he was doing….
And, of course, there was still time for Rodgers and Potter to be given the boot as well….
Which Premier League Club Has Sacked the Most Managers?
In dismissing Potter, Chelsea now enjoy the unwanted joint-record of having sacked more managers than any other Premier League club.
They’ve now shown the door to 13 permanent managers (Jose Mourinho twice, bringing the total of sackings to 14) since the Premier League began in 1992. Only Tottenham have handed P45s to the same number in that time.
This was Potter’s first sacking in English football, while for Rodgers it was the third time he has prematurely been given the boot – from a total of six job roles, that’s a rather alarming ratio.