We’ve produced a new report looking back at the mix of managers in the Premier League since it began in 1992, and whether those managers had played for the club. The report provides the full analysis but below we give the main conclusions.
The mix of nationalities of Premier League managers has transformed beyond recognition in the past 20 years, and is still changing:
- UK managers were a minority in the Premier League for the first time in 2015.
- For English managers, numbers declined substantially over the first 20 years of the Premier League (from 17 in 1992 to 4 in 2012) – see chart below
- For the combined number of Northern Irish, Scottish and Welsh managers the major falls have happened in the last four years (from 8 in 2012 to 3 in 2016) – see chart below
- The era when most top managers had played for their club appears to be long gone. However, the number of Premier League managers who played for the club has risen from zero in 2013 to 3 in 2016
As an indicator of progression from playing to managing at the top level of club football, these results suggest that for the vast majority of clubs, former players have not been developed sufficiently to take over the managerial reigns.
We think manager development is key for clubs and countries, and will be looking more at the topic in future analysis.