Birmingham City next permanent manager odds
Birmingham City find themselves challenging for a place in the Premier League six long years after suffering relegation from the top flight.
In that time, Birmingham saw themselves slip as low as 21st in the second division table back in 2013/14. However, the appointment of Gary Rowett ahead of the 2014/15 campaign has worked wonders, with the club claiming 10th place finishes under their new boss in both of the seasons that followed.
This campaign has so far seen Birmingham City take their game to the next level. A brilliant start to the season, which saw the club lose just one of their opening ten league matches, propelled them into the play-off spots, where they have remained since.
Unsurprisingly, the club’s good form saw Rowett linked with a number of vacant positions, including the Derby hotseat. Derby narrowly missed out on Premier League qualification last season and have struggled to replicate their good form this time round. A row with club owner Mel Morris ultimately cost Nigel Pearson his job, before rumours surrounding Rowett quickly began to circulate.
Amid the speculation, Rowett insisted that he was dedicated to guiding Birmingham City to the Premier League. Yet, the more success the 42-year-old boss achieves with Birmingham, the bigger and better the clubs that pursue him will be. So who should Birmingham City turn to, should Rowett decide to depart?
The man who he was tipped to replace at Derby - Nigel Pearson - would be a decent choice. The fiery manager proved during his time at Leicester City that he can achieve promotion from the Championship against all odds and he laid the foundations at the club which ultimately guided them to the Premier League title in the 2015/16 season.
While Birmingham are unlikely to be the champions of English football in five years time, they would undoubtedly be playing at a higher level under the former Derby boss. Their current style of play suits Pearson and he would need to make very few changes to get the club playing his way.
Of course, given that his time at Leicester City came to a sour end following a row with the club’s management over the treatment of his son, and his time at Derby was similarly marred by a falling out with the club’s owner, the Birmingham City board may be reluctant to hand the position to a man who is more than capable of causing a scene.
If it is deemed that Pearson isn’t worth the risk, the club should turn their attention to Sam Allardyce. The shamed former England boss is in need of a job that will allow him to restore his respect in the game and taking Birmingham to the Premier League would allow him to do just that.
Better yet, Allardyce is best known for keeping teams in the Premier League. Most clubs that achieve promotion to the top flight struggle to avoid relegation the following season. Yet, Allardyce would provide a safety net that should serve to prolong the club’s stay at the highest level, should they achieve promotion this season.