Claude Puel
bbc.co.uk

Which Premier League managers could be facing the axe next?

As the Premier League season enters its final stages, there will be plenty of football managers who will be looking nervously over their shoulders. Whilst Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp and Manchester City’s Pep Guardiola have once again proven that they can get the results, for certain other coaches, the situation looks much less secure.

From Chelsea’s Maurizio Sarri to Arsenal’s Unai Emery, there are plenty of big clubs who will be thinking how about how a managerial change could transform their fortunes. Plus relegation-threatened sides like Fulham will be making it clear that things need to change fast otherwise there could be drastic consequences.

With plenty of bookmakers now offering odds on who the next Premier League manager will be to get the chop, it’s a good time to see who could be the front runners for a chance in employment in the upcoming months.

Will Chelsea sack Maurizio Sarri?

Anybody who saw Manchester City’s recent 6-0 demolition of Chelsea will know that Maurizio Sarri will not be fancy his chances of staying at Stamford Bridge next season. Not only have Chelsea had to contend with some seriously inconsistent form, but the constant threat of Real Madrid signing their star player, Eden Hazard, has made for a tricky time in the Chelsea dressing room.

As such, Chelsea have found themselves adrift from the title race, and will have to fight hard to gain entry to European football next season. At sixth place in the Premier League table, it’s going to be a difficult task for Sarri to motivate his squad onto bigger and better things. With even clearly talented forwards like the French star, Olivier Giroud, suffering from barren periods in front of the goal, it’s hard to see how Sarri could turn things around. And whilst the Italian manager worked wonders at Napoli, it seems as though his time at Chelsea could soon be up.

Can Unai Emery last another season at Arsenal?

Arsenal are another one of the Big Six to have had a pretty tricky season. Whilst the team seemed to enjoy an upturn in fortunes mid-season, things haven’t gone well recently, and they have just been leapfrogged by Manchester United to find themselves in fifth position in the Premier League table.

Big things were expected of their head coach, Unai Emery, at the start of their current campaign. The Spaniard worked wonders at Sevilla, and showed that he could cope with managing bigger teams during his time at Paris Saint Germain. But when it came to filling the boots of the Arsenal legend, Arsene Wenger, it seems that Emery has had a tougher time.

With ongoing rumours that Gunners stars like Mesut Ozil are campaigning for Emery to get sacked, it seems as though there’s plenty of conflict in the Arsenal dressing room. And with just 12 matches to play in the Premier League campaign, it looks like time might soon be up for Emery.

Marco Silva tipped for the axe at Everton

Everton are a long way off repeating any of their past glories, and much of their poor form has been placed at the feet of their manager, Marco Silva. With plenty of embarrassing results like their 2-6 home drubbing by Tottenham, there’s plenty of reasons to believe that the Portuguese coach could be the next to get the chop.

There have been plenty of questions as to why Silva would give his players an extended break of 17 days without a match before their recent defeat by Watford. And with a playing record that includes 10 losses in 16 games, it’s easy to see why the Goodison Park faithful are rapidly losing their patience in Silva. But with rumours circulating that Jose Mourinho could be next in line for the Everton manager job, there will be a few people recommending that the Toffees hang on to Silva for just a few more matches.

Is Claudio Rainieri set to leave Fulham?

Few people would have expected Fulham to be in with a chance of picking up the Premier League title. But even so, the fact that the London club are second bottom of the league table with just four wins to their name is hardly likely to make Claudio Rainieri feel secure in his management position.

The Italian coach faced the brunt of Fulham fans’ criticisms after some mystifying substitution decisions in their 0-3 home defeat against Manchester United. Whilst Fulham ended the second half of last season in fine form, their current campaign has been a mixed bag at best. There was hope that Rainieri would be able to repeat his magic that was shown at Leicester City, but for the moment the odds are looking like the Italian coach could be the next to get the axe.

Can Claude Puel stay on at Leicester City?

Whilst a mid-table position may suggest that things are going fairly well for Leicester City, it seems as though there are plenty of disagreements within the Foxes camp. The side’s recent 3-1 defeat by Tottenham highlighted how many people seem to blame their head coach, Claude Puel, for the Leicester’s mixed form.

Puel’s decision to leave star strikers like Jamie Vardy on the bench and then let him miss a penalty with his first touch of the ball has hardly made the manager a favourite with the Leicester faithful. Pundits like Peter Schmeichel and Jamie Carragher have joined the roll-call of armchair commentators who have blasted Puel for a series of below par performances.

Despite the side containing a flock of stars who could easily help Leicester make the top six of the Premier League, things just haven’t gelled for the Foxes this season. Puel had previously earned plenty of plaudits for guiding his previous club, Southampton, to a Carabao Cup final and a top eight Premier League finish. But with a handful of games to reverse a poor run of form, it’s easy to see why Puel could be living on borrowed time.