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November and December are prime for Premier League Managers to get the boot


The manager sack race is always exciting to follow in the Premier League, but is there a time where managers are more prone to receive their pink slips? We’ve gone through every managerial sacking in the Premier League history and found that November and December are the months that managers should be on their toes.

Premier League Manager Sacking
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The cold shoulder in November and December

In the 25 years of the Premier League, well over 200 times have the managers been sacked during their club’s tenure in the league.

It seems that as the weather turns colder, the firing squads begin to heat up. November and December yield a third of all the 72.73% in-season managerial sackings in the League’s history, each racking up 15.1% of the total released managers.

It can be assumed that these months are ripe for letting people go as they fall right before the January window. With enough of the season’s performance having passed to make judgements, club chairmen are armed with the evidence needed to make the decision on how to proceed.

With the November-December period in mind, the present moments are the time for current league managers to be on their best behaviour. There’s already a buzz about a few managers looking to get the axe in the coming months. Sunderland’s David Moyes is the odds favourite with Sky Bet at 11/8. With Sunderland currently sitting at the bottom of the table, they can celebrate that they are at least odds favourites in one market.

Swansea City’s Bob Bradley isn’t sitting much better. Currently ranked 19th in the table, the Swans only are only one goal ahead of Sunderland—and with a game against Everton this weekend, they’ll need to be in top form to prevent them from sinking to the bottom.

Offing in the off season

Another season for firing is between the season closer in May and the opener in August. However, what is surprising is that there isn’t that big a spike in the off season as would be expected. In approximately 3 months, only 27.27% of all the manager sackings are executed. Although it seems as an unusually low number for the period of strategizing going into the new season, perhaps teams are just happy to have stayed in the league that they don’t wish to rotate the leadership too much. 

This means that almost 3/4 of all the sackings occur are spread during the active season. Basically, managers don’t have any safe months. Some periods are calmer though, including the first 2 games of the season (August sees only 2.39% firings during the season) and April (4.31%).  

Average Lifespan

If you’re looking for a nice steady career path, a Premier League manager position may not be the job for you. Although the average lifespan of a manager at a single club lies around 889 days (2.5 years), there are many managers who have gotten the boot in less than 889 hours! John Carver only lasted as Newcastle United’s permanent manager for 2 days in 2004. He later made his return to the head job at the club in 2015, where he only lasted 135 days. Joe Jordan’s times at Portsmouth were even more short-lived. His first tenure in 2005 lasted just under 2 weeks. He was then re-hired 10 years later, but was sent off a mere 3 days later. 

Of course there are a few success stories. Sir Alex Ferguson remains the longest tenured manager of a Premier League team, leading Manchester United for over 26.5 years. The closest man to Sir Alex’s feat is Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger, who has spearheaded the London team for just over 20 years.  

More facts from us

If you are interested in reading more articles built up around data trends, take a look at our Facts by Bettingexpert section where we analyse real data trends to help us predict future outcomes.