With just 12 matches left to play in this remarkable Premier League campaign, Steve McClaren has a mighty challenge on his hands if he is to save his and Newcastle’s bacon. The Magpies sit precariously in the relegation zone on goal difference from Norwich in 17th position and three points away from Swansea above them. Although it is not complete panic stations just yet, the next five games will go a long way to deciding who is to be relegated come the end of the season.
The relegation six-pointers come thick and fast in March as Bournemouth and then Sunderland visit St James’ Park which is then followed by a trip to Norwich. Steve McCLaren’s position has been questioned time and time again throughout the season after results; especially away from home, that most would say have not justified the amount of money spent on new players in the last year. Recent opinion polls have showed that the fans want the former England manager out as soon as possible, but the noises coming from the top suggest McClaren will be given time to prove himself.
With such important matches on the horizon, could keeping the current regime now prove to be ultimately fatal come the end of the season? Would a new boss make the immediate impression that would be sorely needed, or should McClaren be allowed to see the job through and push on next season if he was to keep Newcastle in the Premier League? No doubt these conversations have been discussed in the boardroom but if a new manager was to be sought, who would be available to come in a do the job and more importantly, who would have reason to do so?
Here are five managers who may do just that.