As an English Liverpool fan, I have taken a keen interest in the news that Roy Hodgson is likely to be appointed the next England manager.
Whilst I was not a fan of him during his time at Anfield, I can also appreciate the good work he has done at Fulham and West Bromwich Albion over the last few years. Of course, the expectations at the latter two clubs are significantly lower than they are on the red half of Merseyside, so it may be easier to be successful with those teams.
Equally, if Hodgson thought there was pressure at Anfield, it’s nothing like having the weight of the country on his back, and his pals in the media will not be so friendly if he fails in the England job as they were when his brief stay at Liverpool fell apart.
I have previously looked at his Liverpool record compared to Kenny Dalglish’s, but in light of recent developments I thought it would be interesting to compare his career record with how former England managers have performed with the national team.
To try to ensure a reasonably fair comparison, I have used Roy’s figures from the Premier League, Serie A, and European international football; these are not entirely the same as managing England, but it’s the best comparison I can assemble. Let’s start with a look at the win percentages:
Whilst West Bromwich Albion and Fulham wouldn’t be expected to match England for win percentages, the likes of Internazionale and Liverpool certainly should. I assume the FA are impressed with Hodgson’s record with the Swiss national side; in fairness, with the praise that Terry Venables gets for his time as England manager, Roy does deserve credit for out-performing him with a smaller footballing nation like Switzerland.
All of Roy’s other positions have seen him register at least 10.9% less wins than the England average though, which suggests he is going to have to step up if he takes on the national side. His cause is also not helped by his immediate predecessor being at the very top of this list, so comparisons will not be favourable if Hodgson makes a slow start.
I’ve also compiled the points-per-game figures, using three points for a win. Unfortunately for Roy, this makes for worse reading than the ‘win percentage’ chart:
Roy Hodgson occupies the bottom six places on this list, seven of the bottom eight, and has eight of the twelve previous permanent England managers above his best position.
In fairness, he will be working with better players than he has done at a number of his previous employers, and as I’ve said, his work with Switzerland was impressive. Whilst that period must have registered in the minds of the FA board, that job ended over sixteen years ago, and there appears to have been little since to suggest he will be up to the task of the England job.
As an England fan, I sincerely hope he is up to the challenge. But I certainly won’t be getting my hopes up.
Please take a look at my other articles, a list of which can be found here. Statistics taken from Wikipedia.