Who will be crowned as Premier League’s manager of the season?
The Premier League boasts some of the best managers in Europe. From Pep Guardiola to Jurgen Klopp, most of them have proved their credentials at the highest level.
There have also been some new appointments made by the clubs this summer. Nuno Espirito Santo was appointed manager of Tottenham Hotspur while Rafael Benitez took charge of Everton. Patrick Vieira has also taken charge at Crystal Palace.
Who is an early contender for Premier League manager of the season?
After two Premier League game weeks, West Ham, along with Chelsea, Liverpool, Brighton and Tottenham, have managed to get maximum points. Meanwhile Manchester United and Everton, who made a brilliant start to the opening weekend, managed to draw their second game. Manchester City, who lost to Tottenham in their first game, came back strong with a 5-0 win over Norwich.
Based on the performance of their respective teams in the first two weeks, let’s take a look at the five early contenders for Premier League manager of the season:
#5 David Moyes – West Ham United
West Ham have improved drastically under Moyes
They have registered comfortable wins over Newcastle United and Leicester City and look set to challenge for the top six again this season.
Since being appointed manager of West Ham midway through the 2019-20 Premier League season, Moyes has taken the club in the right direction. He helped them survive relegation during his first season. But the following season was arguably the high point of Moyes’ managerial career as West Ham managed to finish sixth under his guidance and qualify for the Europa League.
Although his stint with Manchester United did not go well, Moyes is still a smart manager and West Ham are reaping the rewards for appointing him. His team’s performance in the first two matches definitely bodes well for the rest of the campaign. Hence Moyes might be a contender for the Premier League manager of the season award come the end of the season.
#4 Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – Manchester United
Solksjaer has entered his third full season at Manchester United
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will enter his third full season as manager of Manchester United and has done pretty well so far. He has helped the Red Devils improve in the Premier League and has managed to guide them to a top four finish in his first two full seasons. United even finished second behind Manchester City in the Premier League last term.
The only blemish on him is that he has guided United to four semi-finals and a final but has lost in all of them. The most recent was the Europa League final last term where United lost to Villarreal on penalties, finishing another season without silverware.
Nevertheless, there have been consistent improvements in United’s performances since the appointment of Solskjaer as manager.
United have made smart investments in the summer, acquiring Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane to fill the holes in their squad. They started the 2021-22 Premier League campaign brilliantly, thrashing Leeds United 5-1 in front of a packed Old Trafford. However, they only managed to earn a draw against Southampton the following week.
However, the Red Devils still have enough quality in their ranks to finally end their wait for the 21st Premier League title. If that happens, Solskjaer could become a prime contender for the manager of the season award.
#3 Pep Guardiola – Manchester City
Guardiola is easily one of the best managers in the last decade
Pep Guardiola is ranked third in the list of managers who could win the Premier League manager of the season. This might come as a surprise to many, but Manchester City’s stuttering start to the season is one of the reasons Guardiola has been placed lower on the list.
Guardiola won the Premier League manager of the season award last campaign after guiding Manchester City to another league title, his third in four years. His side won the title with a 12-point difference to second-placed Manchester United. The Spaniard’s innovative and tactical nous helped City ease past all the challenges throughout the season.
City are the favorites to win another title this season and have strengthened their attack with the addition of Jack Grealish. They are also looking to add Harry Kane to their ranks, although that deal is proving to be difficult to complete.
However, City have not had the best of starts to the new season, losing to Leicester in the Community Shield and Tottenham on the opening weekend of the Premier League. Although they had a brilliant 5-0 win over Norwich City last weekend, it remains to be seen if Guardiola can win successive Premier League titles.
Despite the opening day jitters, there will be no denying his claim to the manager of the season award if Guardiola weaves his magic again.
#2 Jurgen Klopp – Liverpool
Klopp has transformed Liverpool since being appointed as manager
Jurgen Klopp has completely transformed Liverpool since being appointed as manager in 2015. He has taken the Reds from being top four challengers to the Premier League champions during his six years at the club. The German also guided Liverpool to Champions League glory in 2019.
Liverpool did not have the best of campaigns last season. Injuries to key players like Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip, coupled with star forwards going out of form, saw them struggle during the season. However, a late flurry of wins helped them secure third position on the final day and qualify for the Champions League.
Van Dijk and Matip are now back and fully fit for Liverpool while they have also added Ibrahima Konate to their ranks. The Reds started the 2021-22 Premier League season brilliantly, registering a comfortable 3-0 win away at Norwich. They followed it up with a comfortable 2-0 win over Burnley last weekend.
Klopp has already displayed tactical nous and man-management to counter difficult situations at Liverpool. If the Reds can avoid major injury issues, they will mount a serious title challenge, thereby making Klopp a top contender for Premier League manager of the season.
#1 Thomas Tuchel – Chelsea
Tuchel guided Chelsea to Champions League glory last season
The German was appointed at the club in January last season after Frank Lampard struggled to get the best out of the Chelsea squad. The former PSG manager immediately made the Blues a much stronger unit. He utilized the 3-4-3 system and opted for a methodical, possession-based play where his team controlled the game.
Although he lost the FA Cup final against Leicester City, Tuchel took Chelsea from ninth when he arrived to fourth at the end of the season in the Premier League.
But his biggest achievement arguably was winning the Champions League by beating favorites Manchester City 1-0 in the final.
The Blues have started the new season under Tuchel in brilliant fashion. They won the UEFA Super Cup on penalties and blew Crystal Palace away in a comfortable 3-0 win in the Premier League. Romelu Lukaku has also been brought in to solve Chelsea’s goalscoring issues and he immediately showed his skills with a goal against Arsenal in the Premier League.
Tuchel’s Chelsea are heavy favorites alongside Manchester City to win the Premier League this season. If the Blues can end their four-year wait for a Premier League trophy, Tuchel may well walk away with the manager of the season award.