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The sack race: Were this season’s Premier League managerial changes successes or failures?

Eddie Howe has undoubtedly changed the fortunes at Newcastle, but of the nine other managerial switches during the Premier League in 2021/22, which were an upgrade and which shouldn't have bothered.

The 2020/21 campaign saw just four managerial changes but with Watford back in the Premier League that figure was always going to be surpassed this term.
As it was, Watford only employed three managers before seemingly accepting their fate and it is back down to the Championship for the Hornets.
But what of the other top-flight managerial appointments?
Planet Sport assesses all ten from 2021/22, starting with Claudio Ranieri.

Claudio Ranieri - replaced Xisco Munoz at Watford

Since the Pozzo family took over at Vicarage Road in 2012 there have been 15 managers at the club.
Xisco Munoz had got Watford promoted back to the Premier League but lasted just seven games in charge of the club in the top flight, leaving the club in 15th spot.
The man to replace him was Premier League-winning manager Claudio Ranieri.
However, Ranieri became the first name to be hired and fired this season, lasting only three months in charge of the Hertfordshire club.
Ranieri came with a big reputation but left with a whimper, as the club entered freefall, dropping into the relegation zone before his sacking. He won just two of 14 league games, with those being comprehensive victories over Man United (4-1) and Everton (5-2).

Points per game this season under Munoz: 1.00

PPG under Ranieri: 0.54

Position when Munoz sacked: 15th

Position when Ranieri sacked: 19th

Success or failure: Failure

Eddie Howe - replaced Steve Bruce at Newcastle

Eddie Howe was always on to a winner after taking over from the almost universally loathed Steve Bruce.
Throw in bucketloads of Saudi cash and the north-east side is almost completely unrecognisable from the one that kicked off the season - indeed the one that Howe inherited.
He took over in November, with the club seemingly destined for the Championship.
However, he has lifted the Magpies to mid-table and is even in with a shout of being named Manager of the Season.

To put his achievements into perspective, if you calculated the Premier League table from January 1, Newcastle would be comfortably in the Champions League spots.

Points per game this season under Bruce: 0.43

PPG under Howe: 1.58

Position when Howe appointed: 19th

Position now: 10th

Success or failure: Success

Antonio Conte - replaced Nuno Espirito Santo at Tottenham

Tottenham's appointment of Nuno Espirito Santo was a shock to the Spurs faithful, given that he had no prior experience of managing 'big' teams and their apprehension was justified as the Portuguese manager lasted just ten league games.

The north London club brought in last season's Serie A-winning manager Antonio Conte and it has proved a huge upgrade. In mid-table when Espirito Santo departed, Conte has turned Spurs into a team challenging for the Champions League spots, winning over half of the league matches he has overseen.

He's not completely eliminated their Spursyness, however.

Points per game this season under Espirito Santo: 1.5

PPG under Conte: 1.92

Position when Conte appointed: 9th

Position now: 5th

Success or failure: Success

Steven Gerrard - replaced Dean Smith at Aston Villa

Former Rangers manager and Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard took the Aston Villa job on November 13, taking over from Dean Smith who made way after five successive defeats.
Gerrard made an immediate impression and boosted morale at Villa Park with the loan acquisition of former team-mate Philippe Coutinho.
Four successive defeats in March and April tempered enthusiasm but Saturday's win over Norwich looks to have secured the Premier League status for another season ahead of what promises to be a busy transfer window.

Points per game this season under Smith: 0.91

PPG under Gerrard: 1.36

Position when Gerrard appointed: 16th

Position now: 13th

Success or failure: Success

Dean Smith - replaced Daniel Farke at Norwich

Sacked as Aston Villa manager and then hired as Norwich City boss just eight days later, Smith faced a huge task to try and prevent the Canaries' second Premier League relegation in three years.
The club had claimed just five points from their first 11 games under Daniel Farke and while 16 from the subsequent 23 has been something of an improvement, relegation has been confirmed with four matches still to play.

Points per game this season under Farke: 0.45

PPG under Smith: 0.7

Position when Smith appointed: 20th

Position now: 20th

Success or failure: Failure

Ralf Rangnick (interim) - replaced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Man United

Ralf Rangnick was left disappointed by VAR in Arsenal defeat
Ralf Rangnick started life brightly at Old Trafford after succeeding Ole Gunnar Solskjaer but despite United going unbeaten in their first five games, there were already murmurings of dissatisfaction over the German's tactics.
United's form since Rangnick took charge would place them fifth in the table, some way down on the second achieved by Solskjaer last season.
However, their failure to mount a sustained push for the top four, combined with a lack of success in cup competitions means few United fans are mourning his move to an advisor role in the summer.

Points per game this season under Solskjaer: 1.5

PPG under Rangnick: 1.68

Position when Rangnick appointed: 7th

Position now: 6th

Success or failure: Failure

Frank Lampard - replaced Rafa Benitez at Everton

Rafa Benitez's Liverpool connections proved difficult to shake off, especially combined with a downturn in form for the Toffees.
However, former Chelsea manager Lampard has struggled to arrest the slide, with the Merseyside club dropping into the relegation zone.
A win over the Blues has given the Everton faithful renewed hope a first-ever relegation from the Premier League can be avoided. However, this is not what they were hoping for when Lamaprd was appointed in

Points per game this season under Benitez: 1

PPG under Lampard: 1

Position when Lampard appointed: 16th

Position now: 18th

Success or failure: Failure

Roy Hodgson - replaced Claudio Ranieri at Watford

Watford sacked their second manager this season when Claudio Ranieri was shown the door to be replaced by 74-year-old Roy Hodgson.
Hodgson came in off the back of a fairly successful spell at Crystal Palace and there were many questioning his decision to forego retirement for a relegation battle with the Hornets.
Just two wins and two draws from 14 matches have again got the former England boss reaching for the pipe and slippers.
And, barring a miracle, Watford will be back in the Championship next season, a feat they could just as easily have achieved with Ranieri at the helm.

Points per game under Ranieri: 0.54

PPG under Hodgson: 0.57

Position when Hodgson appointed: 19th

Position now: 19th

Success or failure: Failure

Jesse Marsch - replaced Marcelo Bielsa at Leeds

American Jesse Marsch's first taste of Premier League football has been a real baptism of fire.

Inheriting a struggling side from the popular Marcelo Bielsa he has much improved Leeds' defence, while their points per game is also much higher than under Bielsa.

Two points clear of the relegation zone when he took over, that cushion remains.
However, with just four games left and Everton having played a game fewer, it is easy to argue Leeds are now in a far more precarious position than when he took over.
With Arsenal next up, Leeds could easily find themselves in the relegation zone going into their final three games of the campaign.

Points per game this season under Bielsa: 0.88

PPG under Marsch: 1.38

Position when Marsch appointed: 16th

Position now: 17th

Success or failure: Failure

Ben Mee, Mike Jackson and Connor King - replaced Sean Dyche at Burnley

Sean Dyche ended an almost 10-year association with Burnley when he was sacked on April 15.

He was replaced by a team of Ben Mee, Mike Jackson and Connor King, with the Clarets accused of lacking a plan following their failure to immediately appoint a permanent successor to the much-loved Dyche.

However, it appears they knew exactly what they were doing, with the temporary management team overseeing three wins and a draw to lift Burnley out of the bottom three.

Points per game this season under Dyche: 0.8

PPG under Mee, Jackson and King: 2.5

Position when Mee, Jackson and King took charge: 18th

Position now: 16th

Success or failure: Success

READ MORE: Roy Hodgson confirms Watford exit this summer, John Eustace favourite for post

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