Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tenure at the club is coming to an end after a string of poor results. There has been much speculation about who might take his place if he is fired.
Tottenham Hotspur has signed Antonio Conte, who was previously on the market. There aren’t a lot of world-class managers out of work right now. So, not only Manchester United, but any elite club looking for a top manager now would have difficulty doing so.
On that note, here are the five best managers who are currently unemployed:
Number 5: Nuno Espirito Santo
Nuno Espirito Santo‘s time at Tottenham Hotspur did not go as planned. The Portuguese manager was fired after only four months in charge of the club.
While Spurs’ football was unappealing to watch under Santo, it is difficult to blame him for the club’s shortcomings. The 47-year-old was not the club’s first choice, so Spurs must accept responsibility for making a poor choice in the first place.
In retrospect, it’s clear that Santo was never going to last at the club. However, the former Valencia manager has demonstrated that he is far superior to how he performed at Spurs.
Wolverhampton Wanderers were promoted to the Premier League under Santo’s leadership. Under him, Wolves finished seventh in England’s top-flight twice. The Portuguese prefer to play structured and disciplined football. While he had a lot of success with Wolves playing that way, it was never going to go down well with Spurs fans.
Number 4: Ernesto Valverde
Ernesto Valverde, like Nuno Espirito Santo, is not known for his charisma. The Spaniard prefers to let his work speak for itself.
When Barcelona hired Valverde as a manager in 2017, he was thought to be a safe bet. He had big shoes to fill after taking over the Barcelona hot seat from the much-loved Luis Enrique. At this point, the Blaugrana’s financial situation was deteriorating, and cracks were beginning to appear in the club’s structure.
Nonetheless, Valverde led Barcelona to two La Liga titles. On the other hand, fans will remember him bitterly for shocking losses in the Champions League to AS Roma and Liverpool. Barcelona was in command both times, only to blow significant first-leg leads away from home.
The club fired the Barcelona manager in 2020 and replaced him with Quique Setien.
Number 3: Lucien Favre
Lucien Favre, like Santo and Valverde, is not a charismatic manager. He is, however, one of the most experienced managers on the market right now.
Favre was on the verge of joining Crystal Palace this summer, but the deal fell through. The Swiss is well-known for his ability to bring out the best in his teammates. His Borussia Monchengladbach and Nice teams outperformed expectations, so it was not surprising to see him appointed by Borussia Dortmund in 2018.
The 64-year-old won the DFL Supercup with the Bundesliga giants. His era, however, will be remembered as a time when young and exciting talents played some exciting football. Under him, Jadon Sancho, Erling Braut Haaland, and Giovanni Reyna all flourished.
Favre was fired, however, following BvB’s poor run of form in December of last year.
Number 2: Paulo Fonseca
This summer, Paulo Fonseca was considered for the Tottenham Hotspur manager’s job before Nuno Espirito Santo was appointed.
Fonseca is clearly eager to return to management as soon as possible. During his time with Shakhtar Donetsk, the Portuguese made a name for himself as a talented young manager. He was appointed manager of Roma in 2019, and he led them to fifth place in the league in his first season.
The following season, Roma finished seventh and advanced to the UEFA Europa League semi-finals. Fonseca’s team plays attractive football, and he has been linked with a few Premier League jobs since leaving Italy.
Number 1: Zinedine Zidane
Who else is there? Zinedine Zidane is arguably the only world-class manager who is currently unemployed.
Zidane, a world-class player in his playing days, has made the transition to the world-class manager with relative ease. The Frenchman was Real Madrid’s manager for two years. He led them to three Champions League titles in a row, as well as two league titles.
Zidane is still being linked with a move to Manchester United. Following Jose Mourinho’s dismissal, he was heavily linked. Fans are calling for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to be fired. With Antonio Conte out of the picture, Zidane is an appealing option. However, it has been suggested that the Frenchman is instead of waiting for a job in France.