• Home
  • Soccer
  • Marcelo Bielsa, Dean Smith and six other Premier League managers under pressure to deliver results

Marcelo Bielsa, Dean Smith and six other Premier League managers under pressure to deliver results

It's that time of the season where managers come and go, and Planet Sport takes a look at some of the clubs who could be in need of hiring new coaches.

After a poor start to the season, Mikel Arteta quickly became favourite to be removed from his role as Arsenal boss. However, he has lifted the pressure off himself with victories over north London rivals Tottenham and Aston Villa to move up in the top half of the Premier League.

Then it was Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's time to face the heat from pundits and fans on social media following a poor run of form in the league and Europe, and that defeat to Liverpool.

With marquee signings of Cristiano RonaldoJadon Sancho and Raphael Varane in the summer you would have expected a title tilt this season, instead, it looks like another fight for a top four finish. Antonio Conte, Zinedine Zidane and Brendan Rodgers have all been linked with the post.

However, a 3-0 victory over Tottenham has eased the pressure of Ole - for now anyways...

Planet Sport takes a look at the other Premier League managers who are already at risk of losing their jobs after underwhelming starts to the campaign.

Sean Dyche

The man who is seen by many as the only reason Burnley remain in the Premier League. Despite being linked with Crystal Palace in the summer, Dyche committed himself to the club by signing a new five-year deal this season.

Burnley are set for a relegation battle yet again though and this time it could be a return to the Championship for Dyche's side. Up until this weekend, Burnley had won once at home since coming back to beat Aston Villa 3-2 in January with that win coming against...er Rochdale. 

A 3-1 win over Brentford at Turf Moor has eased some of the heat off Burnley who only have one expectation for this season - to remain in the Premier League.
After being taken over by ALK Capital at the start of the new, nothing much has changed but if results continue to go the way they have done, then a change could be on the cards and Dyche - who has been in charge since 2012 - may be the one in the firing line.

Dean Smith

This man has achieved a lot at Aston Villa. Taking over from Steve Bruce in 2018 - with the club mid-table in the Championship - Smith won 10 games in a row to guide Villa back to the Premier League via the play-offs.

Last day survival in 2018/19 was followed up by an 11th place finish last season. Progression is being made but more than £300million has been invested in players and this summer saw star man Jack Grealish depart to Manchester City.

Danny Ings, Leon Bailey and Emi Buendia were signed to replace Grealish but Smith does not know his best team at the moment and they are some way off from challenging for European qualification - a target of Smith's and the owners.

A 4-1 thrashing at home to West Ham has added huge pressure to Smith's position at Villa. The good thing is, there aren't any names that stand out to replace him - realistically anyways - and we imagine John Terry isn't on their radar...

Marcelo Bielsa

The Argentinian is a hero at Leeds United. After guiding them back to the Premier League, last season's return saw them earn a top 10 finish.

However, a lack of signings in the summer has seen the Whites struggle to replicate their fast and furious approach on the pitch so far. Daniel James was the only significant signing while Jack Harrison joined the club on a permanent basis from Manchester City.

Leeds would never dream of sacking El Loco - imagine the reaction from their fans?

Bielsa is in his fourth season at the club though, an unusual stat in his managerial career. Don't rule out Bielsa walking out on Leeds before the end of the campaign if results and performances don't get better.

Daniel Farke

The German has been at the Canaries since 2017 and has guided them to two Premier League promotions.

However, a second relegation is inevitable this season and whether Farke leaves before the end of the season is something the Norwich board have to weigh up.

What is their vision - are they happy to continue being a yo-yo club or do they want to at least try and maintain their top-flight status?
If it's the latter, then a change is needed but more importantly, if they don't make additions from the January window, a replacement won't make much difference. At this rate, they are fighting to avoid the lowest points tally in Premier League history.

Nuno Espirito Santo

Jose Mourinho was sacked last season - much to the relief of Tottenham Hotspur fans. But what they got in the summer was seventh choice Nuno Espirito Santo. It started off well with an opening day win over champions Manchester City and after three games they were top of the table.

Nuno won August's manager of the month award and with Harry Kane committing his future to Spurs things seemed to be going from strength-to-strength for the north London club...kind of.

However, they then slumped to consecutive defeats in the league against Crystal Palace, Chelsea and Arsenal - conceding nine goals in the process.

Then there was European humiliation, losing to Vitesse and in doing so becoming the first English club to lose to them. Things hardly look great at Tottenham right now and Daniel Levy will no doubt pull the trigger but will he be the next manager to leave? And could Paulo Fonseca be the man to replace him?

Claudio Ranieri

Claudio Ranieri, Watford, manager, Premier League

At Watford anything goes and it would feel strange for them to only have two managers in a Premier League season.

Xisco Munoz got Watford promoted back to the Premier League but was dismissed at the start of October with the club sitting in 15th position.

From winning the league in 2015/16 with Leicester City to being sacked as Greece manager, the 70-year-old Ranieri, has seen it all and knows at any point he could be given a P45 by the Watford owners.

Ralph Hasenhuttl

The Saints boss has had a topsy-turvy tenure which has included reaching a League Cup final and two 9-0 defeats in as many seasons since 2018.

Hasenhuttl - who guided Southampton to 11th in 2019/20 - was given a vote of confidence from the board in 2019 after a 9-0 away defeat to the hands of Leicester before experiencing the same scoreline to Manchester United in 2020.

Summer additions of Adam Armstrong, Romain Perraud and Theo Walcott have yet to improve the club so far and goals are hard to come by, especially since the departure of Danny Ings to Aston Villa.

Luckily for Southampton, there looks like there are three worse sides than them yet again in this year's Premier League.

Patrick Vieira

The Frenchman was appointed as Crystal Palace manager in the summer and has spent around £90million on new players, including Joachim Andersen.

The style of play has improved, yes, but it wasn't hard with Roy Hodgson being previously in charge.

While Vieira has received compliments for his attacking, it's a results business and he has just two wins from nine league games going into the weekend - although his latest win was against Premier League champions Manchester City.

Read more: Six Tottenham managers who were worse than Nuno Espirito Santo

More Articles