Ranking all 19 mid-season Championship manager changes in 2022/23 from worst to best
Football management is becoming an increasingly cut-throat business, and that is perhaps no more true than in the Championship.
There have been a joint record of 19 mid-season manager changes in the second tier in the 2022/23 campaign.
This list could look a lot different come the end of the season, but for now, here are the 22/23 manager changes ranked from worst to best…
19) Neil Critchley to QPR
Poor old QPR. Got ditched by one of Steven Gerrard’s friends – Michael Beale – and replaced him with another in Critchley. While Beale enjoyed a dream start at Loftus Road, Critchley was sacked after two months, having won just one of his 12 games in charge.
18) Kolo Toure to Wigan Athletic
You could really flip a coin to separate the bottom two managers. Toure took over a team in freefall following Leam Richardson’s exit and the Premier League winner was dismissed after he failed to win any of his nine games at the helm.
This was an appointment that made little sense and Wigan were not in a position to ride out the Toure experiment. His successor is faring slightly better, though.
17) Mark Fotheringham to Huddersfield Town
This was another puzzling appointment.
The ex-Hertha Berlin coach took his first managerial role at Huddersfield Town after former player Danny Schofield was sacked before he really had the chance to get going.
Fotheringham enjoyed a positive result here and there (five wins in 21 games), but Huddersfield were no better off under him than they were with Schofield.
16) Gareth Ainsworth to QPR
Two games in charge and two losses. The rocker needs to sort things out at Loftus Road, and I’m confident that he will.
15) Mick McCarthy to Blackpool
The no-nonsense Yorkshireman has not brought about as strong of a new manager bounce as Blackpool would have been praying for.
One win and three draws in nine games is not the best record and the Seasiders look to be heading back down to League One as things stand.
14) Neil Warnock to Huddersfield Town
The Championship specialist could not resist accepting ‘one last job’ at former club Huddersfield. A comeback win over out-of-sorts Birmingham City was followed by 4-0 defeats to Burnley and Coventry City and a goalless stalemate vs Bristol City.
With the Terriers eight points clear of safety with 11 games to go, the managerial firefighter is gradually running out of time and may struggle to recreate the heroics he pulled off to save Rotherham United in 2014/15.
13) Chris Wilder to Watford
The ex-Sheffield United boss has a chance to rebuild his reputation at Vicarage Road after his poor spell at Boro. A decent appointment on paper given his track record, but he is unlikely to be given the time to get Watford promoted.
12) Alex Neil to Stoke City
Neil accepted a more lucrative/long-term contract to leave a club on the rise – Sunderland – to take over at Stoke in August, despite the latter becoming an increasingly mediocre Championship side in recent times.
The 41-year-old is a respected manager at this level but he has been unable to put a stop to their slump so far as they are on for a fourth straight underwhelming bottom-half finish.
11) Mark Hudson to Cardiff City
The Welsh side slipped to an 18th-placed finish last term and they are now in the middle of a relegation battle. In September, Cardiff’s board turned to club legend Hudson, who was tasked with getting a team close to his heart out of trouble.
It would have been a great story had he managed it. But sadly, football is cruel and he was sacked after guiding his team to just four wins in 18 games.
10) Slaven Bilic to Watford
Bilic was actually afforded a decent amount of time to get things right at Watford, but he was dismissed earlier this week after 26 games inc charge with a 0-0 home draw against Preston being the final straw.
The 54-year-old was hamstrung by player injuries during his time at Vicarage Road. Though ten wins in 26 is not good enough and Wilder has a big job on his hands to get Watford into the top six.
9) Shaun Maloney to Wigan Athletic
Club legend Maloney made a promising start to life back at the DW Stadium. His return to Wigan initially felt like a sentimental pick, but an unbeaten start after four games raised optimism.
This positive feeling has gone away somewhat in recent weeks as Wigan lost to Preston and West Brom, while they could only draw to out-of-form Birmingham.
8) Sabri Lamouchi to Cardiff City
Having previously done a solid job at Nottingham Forest, Lamouchi has returned to the Championship to become Cardiff’s third manager of the season.
Recent wins over Reading, Birmingham and Bristol City have eased their relegation fears but they are by no means out of the mire, with just six points separating them and the relegation zone.
7) Tony Mowbray to Sunderland
After spending far too long in League One, the Black Cats would have no doubt accepted a dull mid-table season in 2022/23. But as I predicted last July, they have a squad capable of achieving much more. Their current sticky patch has hampered their play-off credentials, though.
Mowbray has still capitalised on Neil’s questionable decision to jump ship. Sunderland have been hampered by Ross Stewart’s injuries this term but they are well-placed to kick on next season under their experienced coach.
6) David Wagner to Norwich City
Jurgen Klopp’s former right-hand man was drafted in to succeed Dean Smith, who really should have been let go earlier than December last year.
Norwich have been marred with inconsistency this season but they have found a bit of form in recent games (four wins in five) and they have enough quality to end up in the play-off places. Though avoiding another 20th-place Premier League finish next season could do them good in the long run.
5) Matt Taylor to Rotherham
There were bound to be a few teething issues for Taylor to overcome after replacing Paul Warne, who had become synonymous with Rotherham after nearly six years as manager.
A team built for the now-Derby County boss have taken time to get accustomed to Taylor’s methods, but with the help of a great January transfer window, things are coming together for the Millers’ new manager.
Rotherham are eight points above the bottom three after picking up seven points against Sunderland, Swansea City and QPR. It would be a superb achievement if Taylor can end the club’s relegation-promotion hoodoo.
4) Liam Rosenior to Hull City
Aged 38, Rosenior is one of the youngest managers in the Championship and he is so far making the most of his opportunity at Hull City.
The Tigers were sat perilously just above the bottom three when he took over in November, but they are now in 14th and closing in on safety.
3) Carlos Corberan to West Brom
Like Norwich City with Smith, the Baggies endured a drawn-out managerial relationship with Steve Bruce. This finally came to an end in August after he won just eight of his 32 games in charge.
Ex-Huddersfield boss Corberan has already surpassed that winning tally and it only took him 12 games to do so.
He has been eking much more out of this West Brom squad than Bruce managed to do. Even if they miss out on the play-offs this season, they will be among the favourites for promotion next term.
2) Rob Edwards to Luton Town
After being unfairly sacked by Watford, Edwards joined their rivals Luton Town when the very unpopular Nathan Jones took over at Southampton.
Edwards did a superb job at Forest Green and he is currently showing why Watford were foolish to give up on him so soon.
Luton have only been beaten four times in 18 games under Edwards and they are doing remarkably well to stick around the play-off picture.
1) Michael Carrick to Middlesbrough
On early evidence, Carrick is on track to enjoy a superb career in management. After enjoying a positive short spell as caretaker boss at Man Utd, he replaced Wilder at Boro following his predecessor’s ugly exit.
Boro were well-fancied to get promoted before this season started. While Wilder could not get the best out of their talented squad, Carrick is doing just that as they have shot up the table at a rapid rate.
Comparisons to last season’s Nottingham Forest are being made, though second-placed Sheffield United are tougher adversaries than AFC Bournemouth were last term. Boro will likely have to settle for a spot in the play-offs and their rivals must produce something special to halt their promotion mission.
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