It’s really important to note that the bookies have offered odds of 6/4 that no manager will leave by mutual consent or otherwise in the remainder of this Premier League season.
This is a reasonably decent bet as no greater authority than Alan Shearer brought attention to the sacking of Reading's manager at this stage of the season as crazy, and pointed out that very few if any sides improve by changing their manager with so few games left to play.
However football is a very tricksy mistress and your Humble Handicapper has the feeling that this season has more twists in its tail yet.
There is a clear favourite with the sports books to be the next Premier league manager to leave his post and that is Chelsea's Rafael Benitez. Rafa is far from flavour of the month with the Chelsea fans and with the Premier League title well out of the London club’s grasp, combined with exit from the Champions League and the consolation prize of the Europa league being the only thing left in Chelsea's crosshairs this season a couple of bad results, combined with Rafa’s “emotional” spirit might see them part company. He is at 6/52 to be P-45’d with Ladbrokes.
At present Chelsea are 1/7 to finish in the top four, but should they go on a bad run in the league, something that they are very capable of and a load odds take a huge swing similarly the odds on a rougher being shown the door will change quite a bit too. Basically if you think Rafa might be out better bet now, not later.
Next up in the bookies sites is Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini.
It seems crazy to say it, especially as City are sitting second place in the Premier League, and will likely finish second in the table. Manchester City are 89/1 Soccer Betting Odds to win the Premier league this season while their cross city rivals are 1/200 to take the title back off them.
The biggest threat to Mancini is probably the floating spectre of Jose Mourinho who has made no secret of his desire to return to the Premier League, but he's not going to do it this season and I think at the very least, barring a complete meltdown, Mancini will be in charge of Manchester City when the last ball of the season is kicked. Just looking a lot less happy than the same stage last season.
Next up in the bookies line of sight is Sam Allardyce, the West Ham manager has gone pretty good guns with his side this season and they look safe from relegation, but hardly likely to set the Premier League title race alight. Allardyce is another one of those managers who has a wide temperamental streak and it's certainly worth having a couple of pounds on big Sam at 16/1 to be the next EPL managers shown the door, just in case
Then comes the really big guns Arsene Wenger, Martin O'Neill and Paul Lambert roll around the 25/1 mark to be shown the door before the end of the season. I'd say Arsenal’s manager would have been worth a bet a few games ago, just as a dark horse, but Le Professor seems to have turn things around and Arsenal are now in real danger of finishing in a Champions League spot yet again this season. I only mention this to wind up my friends who are Gooners but Arsenal are 2000/1 to win the Premier league this season (but are 6/5 to finish in the top four).
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Aston Villa might well go down, although they had a massive six point victory against QPR on Saturday but still I can't see them ditching their manager before the end of the season. Before the start of next season could be a very different matter though.
Sunderland despite the fact that Martin O’Neil is the same 25/1 to be booted out is a slightly different kettle of fish as the Black Cats were expecting to be well clear of the relegation zone by this time of the year they are however flirting with disaster and I feel that of all the managers on the same odds Martin O'Neill is the one most likely to walk.
Soccer Prediction: If it's going to be anybody, it's going to be Rafael Benitez and if there is to be a second it will be Martin O'Neill, but your Humble Handicapper wouldn't think any less of you if you backed no manager to be sacked before the end of the season.