The England job is a poisoned chalice; a nation expects and the team rarely performs to the scale of these expectations. Over 50 years ago, however, Sir Alf Ramsey led England to World Cup glory; afeat yet to be emulated, but one that provides a barometer for comparison.
All too often, a proven manager at domestic level has taken the reigns of the national team: Don Revie at Leeds, Kevin Keegan at Newcastle and even Graham Taylor at Watford and Villa; they’ve subsequently, though, all failed to convert this to national team glory.
England have had a steady and impressive crop of players, too, since 1966. The 2002 World Cup team is often looked back on with nostalgic dismay, especially now players like Jake Livermore are getting their foot in the door. Likewise Gascoigne and Lineker’s 1990 side is often considered one of the best England has ever had.
The England team has notoriously under performed, by both standards of expectation and player talent. The immortality of Sir Bobby Moore and Sir Geoff Hurst under Sir Alf has loomed ominously over England. So let’s have a look at the men at the helm of this consistently disappointing national side.
Current manager Gareth Southgate and caretaker managers in Stuart Pearce, Joe Mercer, Howard Taylor and Peter Wilkinson, have all been left out of the running.
12: Sam Allardyce
Its with great sadness that Big Sam props up this list. But his inability to keep his mouth shut means he comes in as the worst England manager of all-time. Image Source: Twitter
11: Steve McClaren
The wally with a brolly. McClaren failed to ensure England's qualification for Euro 2008 and has been immortalised as national anti-christ. Image Source: Twitter
10: Kevin Keegan
Holding the lowest win percentage (38) of any England manager, Keegan's impressive domestic career fails to live up to his short national one. Image Source: Twitter
9: Graham Taylor
Despite a talented crop of players, Taylor failed to give the national squad any direction and didn't qualify for the 1994 World Cup.
Image Source: Twitter
8: Roy Hodgson
He resigned after a truly abysmal performance against Iceland, where Harry Kane was taking corners... Image Source: Twitter
7: Don Revie
Clough's arch nemesis comes in at seven. Despite being mired in controversy towards the end of his tenure, Don faced almost impossible groups in both 1976 and 1978. Image Source: Twitter
6: Glenn Hoddle
Hoddle holds a respectable 60% win rate for the national side. But controversial decisions and a short tenure due to a disappointing start to the Euro 2000 campaign, means his place doesn't reflect his win ratio. Image Source: Twitter
5: Fabio Capello
Expected to be so great but achieved quite little. Despite impressive qualifying campaigns, Capello's men failed to get past the round of 16 in the 2010 World Cup. Image Source: Twitter.
4: Ron Greenwood
Greenwood just pips Capello in the rankings, by ensuring qualification for England's first World Cup in 12 years in 1982. Reveals his managerial ability with a relatively lower quality squad. Image source: Twitter.
3: Terry Venables
Blighted by negative media coverage and FA hostility. Venables managed to take England to the semis of Euro 96. Image Source: Twitter
1. Sir Bobby Robson.
A no brainer. The only man in the list to take England to the semi-finals of a World Cup. Image Source: Twitter
A poisoned chalice indeed and one that Gareth Southgate currently drinks from. With current talents in Dele Ali, Harry Kane and Marcus Rashford all excelling for their clubs. Let’s hope he can, firstly, keep Harry Kane away from taking corners and secondly, fill a Sir Alf Ramsey-sized hole in England’s trophy cabinet.