The men Sven won’t want to emulate
1. Dennis Wise
Not just a director of football, but Executive Director (Football). Regardless, the rat-alike failed to set the world alight with his recruitment policy. Since he was younger, less experienced and less famous than Newcastle’s then manager, Kevin Keegan, you do have to question Mike Ashley’s logic in making the appointment. The ex-Leeds boss famously became part of the infamous Cockney Mafia before quitting on 1 April this year.
2. Damien Comolli
The ex-Tottenham director of football was turfed out along with manager Juande Ramos after the club’s woeful start last season. Many Spurs fans pointed to Comolli’s transfer flops and said that he was to blame for the club’s plight. Comolli himself blamed Dimitar Berbatov instead. He said: “If a player has refused to play three games, like happened last summer, what can you do about it? I’m not looking for excuses but when I joined Spurs I didn’t realise how difficult it would be to break into the top four.”
3. Dariusz Wdowczyk
The passable Charlie Sheen lookalike joined Livingston in June 2007. He said watching the team from the stands reminded him how much he missed being in the dugout and quit in October 2007 to take up the manager’s post at Polonia Warszawa. He was dismissed from that post amid bribery allegations.
4. Avram Grant
Grant’s arrival at Stamford Bridge in July 2007 signalled the beginning of the end of the Mourinho era. The Special One clearly felt his authority was being undermined by Roman Abramovich’s Israeli chum. Any suspicions he had about Grant’s presence at the club were probably confirmed when the director of football was appointed to replace him as manager when he left.
5. Sir Clive Woodward
Southampton chairman Rupert Lowe was a big fan of the organisational skills of England’s rugby World Cup-winning coach, but overlooked the fact that he didn’t have a clue about football when he appointed him as Saints’ performance director and later director of football. Fractious spells alongside Harry Redknapp and George Burley followed, but Woodward never earned respect among the club’s coaching staff and quit after a year at the club.
Who have we missed?