Which League One gaffers are the biggest chokers?by Mike Holden / 01 December 2016, 13:52Tweet
Mike Holden (@Ratings_Mike) uses profit/loss tables, dating back from August 2008, to identify which League One gaffers are most likely to choke when starting a match as the odds-on favourite:
Bradford City’s League One promotion prospects have declined alongside rising expectations but we probably shouldn’t be too surprised, it’s nothing new for Stuart McCall. The Bantams boss failed to win ten out of 17 games during his first spell as manager at Valley Parade. Now he’s on four wins out of eight since returning in the summer.
The Yorkshire club were 3/1 favourites for the title after 12 matches but their unbeaten record went at Oxford and they’ve now taken just 11 points from the last available 24 following successive away defeats at Southend and Swindon. The clues could be seen earlier, though, in their failure to land short prices against Port Vale (4/5), Oldham (17/20) and Bristol Rovers (10/11).
Consistency is the name of the game and McCall’s record in this regard provides a stark contrast to the three managers he is trying to compete with at the top. Graham Alexander leads the way with Scunthorpe and he boasts an impressive 38 per cent profit when chalked up shorter than evens. Predecessor Phil Parkinson is next across a hefty 65-match sample, and they are both being hotly-pursued by Chris Wilder at Sheffield United.
Richie Barker tops the table, having choked regularly during his 16-month stint as Crawley boss, a trend he has maintained in recent home games as caretaker boss at MK Dons by failing to win home games against Walsall and Chesterfield. But he won’t be around for much longer as caretaker, with owner Pete Winkleman expected to appoint a new manager at stadium:mk in the next week or so.
Phil Brown is a mildly surprising inclusion towards the top of the list but then his reputation outstrips his actual achievements at Southend. Brown, of course, has shown himself to be very adept at landing prize scalps and winning big matches on television but he needed the play-offs to get the Shrimpers out of League Two a couple of years ago due to their general inconsistency.
Uwe Rosler has the best record for taking care of business against lesser opposition, winning 24 out of 34 matches when odds-on during his time at Brentford, which just goes to show that he could have probably held out for a bigger job than Fleetwood. The Cod Army aren’t likely to be shorter than even money too often this season but Rosler has got them into play-off contention and they’re currently on two wins out of two since the German arrived.
Keith Hill also deserves a mention. It’s a bit of a shock to learn that Rochdale have been odds-on 60 times under his guidance, given how they usually operate to one of the lowest budgets at whatever even they operate but it’s credit to Hill that they quietly cope with those expectations to consistently churn out profits nonetheless.
- Pld = the number of matches each manager has started with his team priced up at a best price of shorter than evens (digital odds 2.0).
- P/L = the overall profit/loss figure for each manager had you placed a £10 stake on each of those matches started as odds-on favourites.
- % = the percentage of profit/loss when divided by the overall stake for the number of games played.
- The tables include all matches played since the start of the 2008/09 season across the four English leagues, La Liga, the Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue U.