Managerial Changes: Pocchettino Leads PSG, Marcelino to Bilbao and Two Veterans Back for Relegation Battle

2021-01-09 Bundesliga

The managerial changes in major European league have been apart of the cycle of football there. Some come and go, while some others managed to stay and struggle to save their place. It happens in all level, on the top of the table, mid table and surely at the bottom one for relegation battle.

At the top level, the dismissal of Thomas Tuchel seems reasonable with their current position in the standings. Being stranded on a third below Lille and Lyon is certainly embarrassing for the richest team in Ligue 1. Despite PSG’s big win over Strasbourg last month, the German manager days in Paris were put to an abrupt end. His successor was easy to spot, the former Spurs boss, Mauricio Pochettino. Although he has never won any silverware in his managerial career, the Argentine is a suitable profile for PSG since he was once playing for Le Parisien between 2001-2003. He is expected to overturn their disappointing campaign to a glorious one, especially in the Champions League.

In the mid table, another sudden change took place in La Liga. Athletic Bilbao decided to sack Gaizka Garitano last weekend despite the fact that his men could defeat Elche, which was able to hold Madrid in a draw before, lift their position to the ninth of the table. The former Bilbao B coach who was promoted to the first team in December 2018 and able to bring their side to reach Copa Del Rey final last season, which is scheduled to take place next April, failed to impress the management this season. He was soon replaced by Marcelino Garcia Toral. The former Sevilla, Villareal and Valencia boss with long experience in leading the mid table team to the next level competing with Barcelona and Madrid. His last spell with Los Ches was quite victorious with Copa del Rey title in 2019 after thumping Barcelona in the final.

At the bottom level, two veteran managers who have been without a trace in European football for a while, the Swiss Christian Gross and the Frechman Raymond Domenech have been signed by Schalke and Nantes to save them from the relegation. Christian Gross’s last spell in Europe was in 2012 with Young Boys of Switzerland before tweaking his career to Middle East to lead Al-Ahly of Saudi and Zamalek of Egypt. Gross has been known for his reputation to save big teams from the relegation threat as he did with Spurs in 1997/98 and Stuttgart in 2009/10. Meanwhile, Domenech was out of job even longer, about 10 years, precisely since taking charge of Les Blues World Cup 2010 which ended in a debacle. Both have been hired for a short term, till the end of the season. Perhaps both are not suitable for a long term plan.