Premier League sack race: Who’s next for the chop?

Premier League vào mùa sa thải: Ai sẽ là nạn nhân tiếp theo?

The Premier League can be a demanding place to work, with expectations high and patience short.

Ronald Koeman and Craig Shakespeare have found that out to their peril in the last two weeks, paying the price for poor runs that have left their clubs languishing near the bottom of the table.

With several other teams struggling just nine games into the season, FOX Sports Asia takes a look at who could be next in line for the boot.

Slaven Bilic (West Ham)
For the second season in a row the Hammers have got off to a very poor start under Bilic. Last year, he was able to turn it around and lead them to 11th place, but this year there is added pressure after the board backed him in bringing in the likes of Chicharito, Marko Arnautovic and Joe Hart. The latest reports suggest that Bilic will be given more time to pull off a repeat of last term’s turnaround, but form needs to improve and fast.

Mark Hughes (Stoke City)
Stoke temporarily dropped into the relegation zone at the weekend after a dismal 2-1 home defeat to fellow strugglers Bournemouth – their fifth in six games. Stoke now have a run of four games against Watford, Leicester, Brighton and Crystal Palace that they will look to get something from. Hughes remains confident in his own ability, and while the players may be backing him, fans are becoming increasingly impatient. The positive for Hughes is that the club’s owners are not prone to make hasty decisions and share the same confidence in the Welshman.

Hughes: The heat is on.

Tony Pulis (West Brom)
Another Welshman, Pulis has a great record in the Premier League and has never been relegated as a manager, but West Brom fans have made it no secret that they are not keen on the Pulis brand of football. Without a win in seven games and with matches against Chelsea, Manchester City and Tottenham coming up, their league position (currently 10th) is only likely to get worse in the coming weeks which will increase the pressure on the team and coach. The saving grace for Pulis may be that the club’s hierarchy do not have overly-optimistic expectations, although they have been known to move fast in the past when the club’s Premier League status is under threat.

Antonio Conte (Chelsea)
A surprise inclusion in the sack race, but not when you consider Chelsea’s current position (nine points behind the leaders) and the fate of Jose Mourinho in the season immediately after he won the title. Injuries to key players may have affected Conte’s ability to put out his best team, but with the hefty financial outlay in the summer the Chelsea board will expect the team to be challenging for Premier League and European glory – and not losing to Crystal Palace . Should their challenge falter on either front then it would come as no surprise if ruthless action were taken.