In a shocking turn of events, Leicester City parted ways with their Premier League-winning manager Claudio Ranieri on Thursday. The Italian Manager was sacked nine months after leading his side to an unfathomable Premier League triumph last season. Leicester are languishing at 17th in the league table, just a point off the relegation zone. Though they were able to secure a respectable result at Sevilla on Wednesday, the board took a desperate decision to sack the winner of the Best FIFA Men’s coach award.
Ranieri defied all the odds to lift the league title by finishing 10 points above second-placed Arsenal. They qualified for the Champions League and in spite of a frightful performance in the league, they were able to top their group in the UEFA competition which had the likes of Porto, FC Copenhagen and Club Brugge. Though the club gave Ranieri the backing he required at the start of February, the decision to sack him came as a shock for many, including Leicester legend Gary Lineker.
After all that Claudio Ranieri has done for Leicester City, to sack him now is inexplicable, unforgivable and gut-wrenchingly sad.
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) February 23, 2017
Following Ranieri’s sacking, an interesting statistic was brought to light.
Last winners of the Premier League:
Mancini gone ?
Ferguson gone ?
Pellegrini gone ?
Mourinho gone ?
Ranieri gone ? pic.twitter.com/nTduX34TDS
— TheSPORTbible (@TSBible) February 24, 2017
The last five Premier League-winning managers, including Ranieri, have either been sacked by the club or retired or went away themselves in the next season. Be it Mancini’s triumph for City in 2011/12 season, or Mourinho’s glory with Chelsea in the 2014-15 season, these managers were dismissed by their respective clubs in the season that followed their title triumph. In between, Sir Alex Ferguson’s ended his managerial career by winning the league title in 2012-13 season. And Manuel Pellegrini was asked to leave the club at the end of 2014-15 season as Manchester City paved way for Pep Guardiola to come in this season.
Here we analyse the managers of the last 4 title winning sides, before Ranieri, who left the club in the subsequent season:
ROBERTO MANCINI (Manchester City)
Title – 2011/12, Sacked in 2012-13 season
The Italian manager arrived at Manchester City in December 2009 and changed the dynamics at the club. It was he who utilised the wealth of his owners and spent big money on star players to make Man City a force in the league. In the 2011/12 season, Mancini led his City side to their first domestic league title after 44 years. The title race went down to the last match day in the league as a dramatic late comeback by City led by their talisman Sergio Aguero against QPR was enough for them to finish level on points with neighbours Manchester United and clinch the league title on goal difference.
On 13th May 2013, Mancini was sacked by the City board two days after City’s loss to Wigan in the FA Cup Final. City finished second in the league, seven points behind title winners Manchester United.
Sir Alex Ferguson (Manchester United)
Title – 2012/13, Retired after 2012/2013 title
Arguably one of the greatest managers to have graced the footballing stage, Sir Alex Ferguson concluded his managerial career with a final league title with Manchester United in the 2012-13 season. It brought an end to a historic 26-year reign as the Manchester United manager and a remarkable 38-year managerial vocation, which began in 1974 with Aberdeen. Fergie made sure he quit in a sumptuous fashion and hence waited for the perfect moment to do it. During his long stint at United, he won 38 titles, including 13 Premier league titles, 5 FA Cups and 2 UEFA Champions League titles.
Manuel Pellegrini (Manchester City)
Title – 2013/14, Left the club following no contract renewal in the 2015-16 season
The Chilean manager arrived at the Etihad 17 days after Roberto Mancini’s sacking. After a shaky start to his first season, he led his City side to a sumptuous 20 match unbeaten streak, before winning the Premier League title in his first season as the City manager. He became the first manager outside of Europe to lift the English league title. City scored 156 goals that season, surpassing Manchester United’s record of 143 goals set by the “Busby Babes” in the 1957-58 season.
On 1st February 2016, the club announced that Pellegrini would be leaving in June 2016 following the expiry of his contract. Pellegrini left the club at the end of 2015-16 season with 1 Premier League title and 2 English League Cups before Pep Guardiola took over the following season.
Jose Mourinho (Chelsea)
Title – 2014-15, Sacked by the club during the 2015-16 season
By far the most tactical and charismatic manager in world football, Mourinho returned to his beloved Chelsea where he had enjoyed endless success in 2013. After a 3rd place finish in his first season, Mourinho's Chelsea's side were crowned league champions with three games to spare. They also won the league cup that season with a 2-0 win over London rivals Tottenham Hotspur.
But after a successful season, things went out of control in the 2015-16 season when Chelsea had a horror start to their campaign and slumped to 16th in the league table. After losing 9 of the 16 Premier League matches, Jose was left Chelsea by “mutual consent” on 17th December 2015. He won 1 Premier League title and 1 League cup in his second spell at Chelsea.
Jose turned to Instagram to express his disbelief after Leicester’s decision to sack Ranieri!
A post shared by Jose Mourinho (@josemourinho) on Feb 23, 2017 at 3:18pm PST