Six Premier League managers lost their jobs during the 2019/20 season - Eddie Howe then left Bournemouth in the summer - with Watford infamously sacking three different managers en route to suffering relegation down to the Championship.
It’s been a similar pattern over the last 10 years, with each of the last eight campaigns containing at least six mid-season changes; 2013/14 and 2017/18 both witnessed 10 apiece.
However, while the number of managerial victims in England’s top-flight may seem high, a new study which analysed data on 815 different managerial spells between 2010 and 2020 found that the Premier League is actually the safest of Europe’s top-five leagues when it comes to job security.
RunRepeat found that Premier League clubs gave their managers an average of 69.4 league games; compared to 58.2 games in Ligue 1, 45.5 in the Bundesliga, and 39.6 in La Liga, while the average Serie A manager isn’t even expected to last the course of a full season (35.1).
However, it must be noted that the presence of two Premier League managerial legends - Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger - in the data substantially boosts the Premier League’s tally. Without these two exceptions, Premier League managers averaged 56.1 games although this would still put England’s top-flight ahead of three of the other four top-leagues in Europe, behind Ligue 1.
When it comes to the number of managerial stints coming to an end in the period between 2010 and 2020, it’s Serie A that tops the pile with an eye-popping 220.
Italy may have produced some of the greatest managers, or ‘Misters’, of all time yet data from the survey shows that Serie A clubs can be absolutely ruthless when it comes to losing patience with a manager.
For example, 44 managerial spells in the division didn’t even make it to double figures in league games, while the majority of managers there were sacked after less than 20 games. The current Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa infamously didn’t even manage a single game at Lazio back in 2016.
Over in Spain La Liga was home to 185 managerial stints between 2010 and 2020, the Bundesliga 137, while 131 spells took place in the Premier League, one more than Ligue 1.
When it comes to the reason behind a change in manager, each league is consistent with the majority departing because they’ve been sacked e.g. 65.7% of Premier League managers were sacked. Other reasons include; leaving for another job, a contract ends, the good old ‘mutual consent’, and a resignation.
Meanwhile, the study notes that a relegation scrap is the biggest contributor when it comes to a club changing manager, particularly in the Premier League where 75.4% of the managerial changes over the course of the last decade were made by clubs fighting for their lives at the bottom end of the table. With a 51% success rate.
Finally, in terms of the most trigger-happy month, December takes centre stage in the Premier League, while May also features relatively highly, which isn’t too surprising as it's when the season comes to a close.