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Thursday, 30 May 2013

The shortest reigns in football management

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With Mark Hughes on the verge of becoming Stoke City's next boss, Jose Mourinho set to return to Chelsea and Manchester City having agreed a verbal deal for Malaga's Manuel Pellegrini, all three of them will be hoping for a long stay in English football.

However, Hughes has already had his first Hughes Out protest - well, one man in a van with a sign, Mourinho will be working under mad Roman - a man who changes his mind more times than his own pants - and Pellegrini has already been told he has to win five trophies in five seasons - so at least they are prepared to give him time even if they have put the pressure on immediately.

They will almost certainly not be joining the list of the shortest reigns in football management. Ranging from 10 minutes to 36 days, Leroy Rosenoir and Steve Claridge have felt the wrath of some impatient chairmen.

Leroy Rosenoir - 10 minutes - Torquay United

The former West Ham striker was just 600 seconds into his second spell at Plainmoor in 2007 when he was informed by the new chief executive Colin Lee that he was not wanted and shown the door.

Dave Bassett - four days - Crystal Palace

The former Sheffield United and Barnsley boss started his managerial career at Wimbledon in 1981 and three years in he agreed to take over at London rivals Crystal Palace. However, four days later he was back at the Dons after changing his mind.

Martin Ling - nine days - Cambridge United

The former Leyton Orient chief walked out on Cambridge after just nine days in 2009 following "irreconcilable differences" with his chairman George Rolls. Fortunately for Ling, Rolls jacked in his post a few days later and Ling agreed to come back under a new chairman. Maybe George Rolls was right though as two seasons later Ling was sacked after a poor run of results.

Micky Adams - 13 days - Swansea City

Fourteen years before the Swans reached the Promised Land of England's top flight, the club was in a right old mess. Inside 18 months they had hired and fired a total of six manager. The shortest reign of the lot of them was Micky Adams, who left in 1997 after a row over money. Even serial shagger Russell Brand has had relationships longer than that!

Paul Hart - 28 days - QPR

F1 boss Flavio Briatore gave former Nottingham Forest and Portsmouth chief Paul Hart the job at Loftus Road, but 28 days later decided he had made a bad decision and Hart suffered the axe for the second time in less than two months after winning just one in five.

Steve Coppell - 33 days - Man City

The former Manchester United winger returned to Manchester but this time in the blue half of the city. Unfortunately the stress of it all got too much for him and quit after just six games in charge. It wasn't long though before Coppell was back in the game with Crystal Palace.

Steve Claridge - 36 days - Millwall

When you step into the Lions' Den you have to impress. However, the new Millwall chairman and Dragons' Den star Theo Paphitis was not happy at the prospect of giving his money to Steve Claridge in 2005. Claridge, the man who has had more clubs than Tiger Woods, left without taking charge of a single game.

Alex McLeish - 40 days - Nottingham Forest

Having relegated Birmingham City and almost doing the same with Aston Villa, it was always a strange decision for Forest, who were desperate to win promotion, to appoint the former Aberdeen and Scotland defender in 2012. Sure enough, after five weeks at the helm, the Scot walked following a dispute over the owner's transfer policy.

Les Reed - 41 days - Charlton Athletic

Listen up Stoke fans. When Alan Curbishley left the Valley after 15 years everyone feared for them. The appointment of Iain Dowie did little to appease those concerns. He left after 15 games and Les Reed was given the task of steering the club around. However, on Christmas Eve, 2006, after just 41 days at the helm, the Addicks gave Reed the sack. Merry Christmas!

Brian Clough - 44 days - Leeds United

Clough hated Leeds and the players hated Clough. Old Big Head couldn't have got off to a worse start by reportedly telling his new players to throw their medals in the bin as they had not been won fairly. It took the Leeds board just 44 days to realise their error and sacked Clough. Not that it bothered him too much as he went on to win back-to-back European Cups with Nottingham Forest.

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Colin Illingworth



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