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Four new managers in the Premier League and how they've fared

Friday 18th November 2016
The premier league always presents a baptism of fire to all newcomers, worse off are managers; these men fight tooth and nail to understand the new terrain and achieve some success – usually, there's little or no room for failure.

This season, we've seen the influx of some reputable managers into English football. With over a quarter of the season gone, we take a critical look at how four ‘newcomer' managers have fared thus far.

Walter Mazzarri

In under four years, Watford has changed managers seven times – Walter Mazzarri being the latest name on the books at the Hornets. The Italian who signed on after 18 months without a job was highly-rated prior to joining Watford. Since his move to Hertfordshire, Mazzarri has made Watford a little bit more difficult to beat, although Liverpool absolutely ripped them apart before the international break.

Mazzarri started life at Watford with his preferred 3-5-2 system, with Troy Deeney and Odion Ighalo spearheading the attack, that system has helped propel Watford to 8th in the table. With four defeats and an equal number of wins, Mazzarri is not doing so badly for a mid-table team with a constrained budget.

As per his terms in his 3-year contract, Walter Mazzarri was given the mandate by the Pozzo family (Watford owners) to ensure that they get at least a mid-table finish in his first season in charge – It's the first time Walter Mazzarri has managed a team outside Italy and he looks like someone who can meet his boss's demands.

Claude Puel

Claude Puel took over a club which had had two fantastic managers (Ronald Koeman and Mauricio Pochettino) tinker the club in recent years, so obviously we all expected some level of quality from the Frenchman; has he been able to deliver that thus far? I'll give you some yardstick to judge him with.

Since our focus here is the premier league, I won't talk about how Puel has performed in the Europa league and of course the League Cup – unless you think Southampton's continued presence in these tournaments has already started taking a toll on Puel's Premier League campaign.

Claude Puel's Southampton sits in 10th position in the league table – I expected better. But take a look at these quick stats: Southampton has only won three times in the league this season, they've also lost four times including back-to-back defeats to Chelsea and Hull. Puel's team have managed to concede the same number of goals they've been able to score (12).

Claude Puel must do more with his team if the Saints are to finish anywhere close to where they did last season (6th).

Antonio Conte

Another worthy newcomer to the Premier League managerial realm is Antonio Conte. The ‘hyperactive!' Italian was given a rude awakening to how life in the premier league can be, after being handed his first back-to-back defeat in Premier League football by Liverpool and Arsenal. He quickly switched his team's formation from 4-1-4-1 to his preferred 3-4-3 system and since then, Antonio Conte's Chelsea has not let in a single goal in the Premier League.
The former Juve manager has managed to get his players firing on all cylinders. With the Premier League rapidly approaching the nail-biting Christmas period, Chelsea (who had a forgettable last season with ‘Mourinho') are 2nd in the league standings and are looking like Leicester's replacement come May 2017.

Antonio Conte is one manager who is gradually settling well to life in the Premier League.

Pep Guardiola

When Pep Guardiola revolutionized Barcelona and started picking up title after title, some critics felt it was a fluke and that he couldn't replicate that feat elsewhere. He later took a ‘sabbatical' and then signed for Bayern Munich raking in 21 titles along the way. Still doubt him? Well, he's in the Premier League today; let's take a look at how he is faring?

The Spanish manager took the Premier League by storm in the opening weeks – guiding Manchester City to an early lead at the summit of English top tier football. Guardiola's City went six Premier League games without dropping points, that form made many pundits cede the premier league title to Manchester City, but a run of disappointing results soon made everyone have a rethink.
Guardiola, is, however, showing everyone how good a manager he is – his team (although 3rd in the table) has only lost once in the league and they definitely cannot be written out of the title race by any means.
Kingsley Ukpai

Kingsley is a football aficionado who craves to read, watch, play and write about the greatest team sport ever known to man. If you're talking football he'll be keen to listen to what you have to say. Loves to play Fantasy Football too.

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