Just twelve games into the Championship season and a total net spend of around £34m in the books, Villa sit in 19th place, fresh off the back of a miserable 2-0 defeat away to Preston North End. It’s reported that on Saturday evening Roberto Di Matteo was informed of his dismissal and now the search for a new Aston Villa manager begins.
Here What Are The Odds looks at the latest contenders to replace the former Champions League winning coach with the odds available at Sky Bet.
The current favourite for the post is former Hull City manager Steve Bruce who is currently priced at 1/6 (1.17). Somewhat controversially Bruce was formerly employed by arch rivals Birmingham City and guided the blue side of the city from 2001 to 2007, leading them to the Premier League. Would Villa fans be able to look past this? Promotion this season would certainly help Bruce endear himself to the Claret and Blue. The odds have been drastically falling on Bruce taking the Villa Park reigns today and it’s now expected that he will be the new manager.
Reports today are already suggesting that Bruce has identified signings he wants to make in January for Villa, with Ahmed Elmohamady of Hull City believed to be top of the shopping list, according to the Daily Star.
Roberto Di Matteo was appointed manager on June 2nd and sacked 124 days later
If former Hull City chief Bruce doesn’t get the position, Burnley boss Sean Dyche is the current runner-up at 6/1 (7.00), although it beggars belief as to why the Turf Moor chief would leave his Clarets for the enemy when his side are competing well in the Premier League.
David Wagner has seen his odds of taking the job rise from 11/2 (6.50) to 11/1 (12.0), seemingly ruling him out and the manager seems intent on taking Huddersfield all the way to the Premier League this season. The Huddersfield boss has seen his stock skyrocket this season having guided the Terriers to first place in the Championship this season, above the likes of Newcastle and Norwich.
A couple of interesting 20/1 (9.00) manager picks are also former England managers who are in desperate need of career boosts. The most newsworthy would be the recently sacked Sam Allardyce who was disgraced last week in an undercover report. Steve McClaren who is more famous for his umbrella and bad Dutch accent is the other, who has a less impressive recent record with Newcastle, Derby and Nottingham Forest. Would any Villa fans fancy either of these two showing up at a Villa Park press conference anytime soon though? Maybe not.
A couple of outsiders that could yet land the top job at Villa Park are Dean Smith (the current Brentford manager) and Steve Clarke (the current interim manager at Villa). Smith has done an admirable job with the Bees guiding them to seventh place in the Championship this season (so far) and at 12/1 (13.0) could be ‘one to watch’, while Steve Clarke is no stranger to the managerial dugout - holding top roles with West Brom and Reading. If he manages to hold on to the job for a few games and impresses that 12/1 price might just be great value.
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