Top Tenner: Player-managers

Posted by Nick Miller

AllsportPlayer-manager Ruud Gullit joins in the celebration after his team's 2-0 victory in the 1997 FA Cup final against Middlesbrough at Wembley Stadium.

With the recent news that David Moyes would be replaced in the interim by current player Ryan Giggs, it seemed a good time to look back through the years at some of the most notable player-managers in football history. Here's the latest Top Tenner looking at the men who could set the lineup and jump right in it on the same day too.

10. Herbert Chapman
His reputation is obviously built on his brilliant spells with Huddersfield and Arsenal (winning two league titles at both and setting the foundations for another one at each club), but Herbert Chapman's managerial genius had taken root while he was still a player. Continue Reading...

Stockpiling and loaning of talent set to haunt Chelsea

Posted by John Brewin

Thibaut Courtois punch Atletico Madrid ChelseaGettyImagesIt is unclear if Thibaut Courtois' future is at Chelsea.


As Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech crashed to the turf and called for immediate medical attention in the Champions League semifinals at the Vicente Calderon Stadium on Tuesday, it was difficult not to glance toward the opposite goalposts. In front of them, tall, young and in rude health, stood Thibaut Courtois -- Chelsea's property, yet untouchable.

Delaney: Who benefits more from the 0-0?

Courtois, in his third season at Atletico Madrid and widely expected to stay for another, is one of 26 Chelsea players out on loan. Continue Reading...

Has David Moyes burned his bridges with football's elite?

Posted by Richard Jolly

David MoyesPA PhotosIt will be intriguing to see where David Moyes next becomes manager.


Former England national team manager Graham Taylor once remarked, with a mixture of amusement and irritation, that the moment he left his highest-profile job, his name seemed to change. He was no longer "Graham Taylor" but "former England manager Graham Taylor."

- Smith: Moyes' failure hurts football managers
- Marcotti: It's vital United find a director of football

Taylor is far and away Watford's greatest manager, did superbly in his first spell at Aston Villa and later became an insightful radio pundit, but for most people, those were mere footnotes. Continue Reading...

Moyes' failure at Man Utd hurts football managers everywhere

Posted by Rory Smith

Laurence Griffiths/Getty ImagesDavid Moyes' failure at Man Utd is a blow for managers everywhere.


The best place to start to assess Sir Alex Ferguson's misplaced faith in David Moyes is probably the ancient Mayan citadel of Chichen Itza. Once you look at Chichen Itza, everything becomes clear.

Chichen Itza was one of the great pre-Colombian cities. It is dominated by a soaring, sacred pyramid -- El Castillo -- which served as the focal point of the cult of Quetzalcoatl, the snake god. In its shadow lies a ball court where the Maya played what is now known as the Mesoamerican ball game. Continue Reading...

It's vital that Man Utd find a director of football

Posted by Gabriele Marcotti

Alex Livesey/Getty ImagesIt's vital that the Glazers get more than the next manager right; they need to hire a director of football also.


Dear Joel and Avram (and if you're reading this, Malcolm, Linda, Edward, Darcie, Bryan and Kevin, too),

You guys are the Glazers. You own Manchester United and this is, no doubt, a trying time. You have just parted ways with your manager, David Moyes, and you need to find a successor. Take this as an open letter filled with unsolicited, but well-meaning, advice.

According to reports, you will make your decision with input from Sir Alex Ferguson, David Gill, Sir Bobby Charlton, Ryan Giggs and Ed Woodward, but I assume it's still ultimately your decision. Continue Reading...

Where now for Moyes? Would you want him?

Posted by Alex Shaw

David MoyesPA PhotosDavid Moyes' reputation is low following his failure at Manchester United.

The colour drained from David Moyes' face when Sir Alex Ferguson told him he had chosen him as the new Manchester United manager. The Chosen One.

It seemed a strange decision to hand the keys to Old Trafford to a man with gaping holes in his CV; a playoff final success with Preston aside. Many saw Moyes as under-qualified to take on the most daunting task in football, but which club would take him now he is out of the job?

The likes of Tottenham, Norwich, West Ham and possibly even Arsenal could be on the look-out for a new manager this summer. Continue Reading...

Assessing Prem newcomers -- Leicester City and Burnley

Posted by Richard Jolly

 	Leicester City David Nugent and Burnley Danny Ings GettyImagesThe goalscoring exploits of Leicester's David Nugent and Burnley's Danny Ings greatly aided their succcessful promotion campaigns.

With Leicester City and Burnley securing their passage into England's top flight, here's a look at what to expect from the new boys next season.

Leicester City

Premier League pedigree: Not played in the top tier since 2004 and dropped down to League One in 2008, but a 10-year absence is their longest time outside the top flight since they won promotion in 1954. Their recent golden age came under Martin O’Neill when they recorded four consecutive top-10 finishes between 1997 and 2000 and reached three League Cup finals, winning two. Continue Reading...

Girard's approach at Lille isn't popular, but it's successful

Posted by Julien Laurens

Philippe Huguen/Getty ImagesRene Girard has Lille on the brink of returning to the Champions League but that hasn't stopped fans from being critical.

The number 21 has to be the number of the season in Ligue 1. It's the incredible number of clean sheets kept so far by Lille this season in 34 league games. It’s even more noteworthy if you take this number in the other way. It means that Lille have only conceded a goal in 13 of the Ligue 1 matches they have played so far this season!

It’s obviously the best in Europe’s five top leagues. Roma is not far behind with 20 clean sheets. Thibaut Courtois has kept 19 for Atletico Madrid. Continue Reading...

Separating facts from myths in Moyes firing

Posted by Gabriele Marcotti

John Peters/Man Utd/Getty ImagesMan United's players let Moyes down, but they're not the reason he was fired.


David Moyes is gone. Manchester United will now rebuild, and he won't be a part of it. Time to explode some myths and consider some facts.

MYTH: Moyes was let down by the players

There are situations -- and enough former professionals admit it -- when players don't like a manager and will somehow tank or not give their all when they think the sack is imminent. That wasn't the case here.

For a start, there are very few United players who have the necessary job security, contract and status that they could afford to do this: Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney (post-extension), possibly David De Gea and Michael Carrick. Continue Reading...

Who could replace David Moyes as manager of Manchester United?

Posted by Miguel Delaney

Diego SimeoneGettyImagesDiego Simeone has worked wonders at Atletico Madrid.


With Manchester United confirming that they have dispensed with manager David Moyes' services, it is imperative the club show much more vision in choosing his successor.

The lack of imagination was the first failure in the initial decision to pick Moyes. A year later, it remains remarkable Sir Alex Ferguson chose so poorly -- or that the decision was waved through without a proper process. It meant United got their long-heralded succession plan so badly wrong. It couldn't have gone worse. Continue Reading...

Twelve of Moyes' most damaging results as United manager

Posted by ESPN staff

Saido BerahinoPA PhotosWest Brom's Saido Berahino celebrates his goal against Manchester United.


Patience has finally run out at Old Trafford, with David Moyes sacked by the club. Eleven Premier League defeats, a failure to qualify for the Champions League for the first time in 19 years and little sign of any serious progress meant the United board were compelled to act.

The season that followed Sir Alex Ferguson's departure has been tougher than expected. Here, ESPN charts the painful defeats that led to Moyes' departure.

Liverpool 1-0 Manchester United, Premier League, Sept. Continue Reading...

Results, delusions, atmosphere made Moyes' firing inevitable

Posted by John Brewin

David Moyes tongue out Manchester UnitedAllsportDavid Moyes' failure and exit leave Man United in unfamiliar territory.


When Manchester United lost Sir Alex Ferguson as manager, they became just another football club.

The usual life of a football manager is brutish and short. Football clubs sack failing managers; it happens all the time. David Moyes' departure would be no surprise at almost any other club, yet in ripping up a six-year contract, United surrendered the pretence of being different.

Any club would consider the future of a manager who has so singularly failed to meet targets. Continue Reading...