Were Leicester Right to Sack Sven, And Who Should Replace Him?

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On the face of it, less regular watchers of Leicester might conclude the sacking of Sven Goran Eriksson after 13 months to be harsh; the season is only 13 games old, and City are only 2 points off a play-off place. Regular watchers of the club might indeed come to the same conclusion. However, most Leicester fans greeted the news of his sacking in the same way that they have speculated for much of his reign; deafening indifference.

The general view has been one that whilst Sven was probably not doing badly enough to warrant sacking, he was definitely not doing well to be completely safe in his job. It’s for this reason you won’t find too many loudly protesting against the decision, but equally why there hasn’t been too many people gunning for his removal. He was doing an average job; no better, no worse. Unfortunately for him, average isn’t good enough for the new Leicester board.

Inconsistency has been the key downfall of Sven’s reign, as has the inability of his teams to push on when they had got into excellent positions; for Leicester to have not spent one minute of his tenure in the play-off places, considering the expenditure and the opportunities, is criminal. Last season, the main objective was to pull away from the relegation places which Paulo Sousa had left the team squalloring in; this accomplished, and the club a point outside the play-offs by mid-February, it looked an inevitability that City would barge into the play-offs.

It never happened. Players had off-days when it mattered, results went against the team, performances dwindled; for the last 2 months of the season, when it was crunch time, Sven’s Leicester never turned up. This left seeds of doubt in the fans, and, it appears, the board.

Coming into this season, the objective has always been clear; promotion, by any means. The any means was presumed to mean ‘any cost,’ though now we know it means ‘any manager.’ To be fair to the board, they have put a lot of money in the club for what has so far been little return; 19 points and 13th in the table is not the start of an odds-on promotion winning campaign. Likewise, there has been little proof that this inconsistency was going to be arrested. Whilst the defence had turned into a mean unit, the midfield seemed at many points uninspired and the attack toothless; the next week it would be the reverse.

The lack of real team spirit and unity is what has perhaps concerned the fans the most; look at Norwich, a team built on that, Southampton similarly. Not necessarily outstanding players, but you will always get a performance from them. This is the blueprint I feel the Foxes need to work on for the rest of the season; either way, some of the players will really need to stand up and be counted, and should rightly feel like the have let Sven down.

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