After six successive defeats in the league, Chris Hutchings has been sacked as manager of Wigan Athletic. His last match in charge for Wigan was the 2-0 home loss against Chelsea on Saturday.
Wigan’s decision to appoint Hutchings in the summer to replace Paul Jewell was a poor decision. The same applied to Bolton’s decision to appoint Sammy Lee in place of Sam Allardyce. Rather than rushing into decisions, which both clubs did, both Bolton and Wigan would have been wiser to appoint managers with more experience than Lee and Hutchings.
Bolton and Wigan now find themselves second and third from bottom respectively.
While Bolton signed Gary Megson to replace the fired Sammy Lee, Wigan have an opportunity to find a manager that will not only keep the club alive in the Premier League but one that will play the type of football that so many fans adored during the 2005-2006 season. Because of their low attendances, Wigan is an easy target for some pundits who consider the club not being worthy of being in the Premier League.
An ideal manager would be someone who could walk into the JJB Stadium, stabilize the squad so they start winning matches and then bring in some quality players in the January transfer window who can play football well and win matches for the club.
Unfortunately for Wigan, the side that excelled so well in the 2005-2006 season got pulled apart during the summer of 2006 as Pascal Chimbonda joined Spurs, Jimmy Bullard moved to Fulham and other integral players moved elsewhere. During the 2006-2007 season, Wigan struggled despite playing a decent brand of football and escaped relegation on the last day of the season.
So who should Wigan target to be their next manager? Paul Jewell is an obvious choice although I’m not sure if he wants to get back into fighting relegation again.
The manager that Wigan chairman Dave Whelan needs to target is Gary Johnson at Bristol City who has achieved significant success at Yeovil Town previously. Johnson has Bristol City playing attractive football and should be interested in taking the step up to manage a club in the Premier League.