Sunderland Eyeing Manager With 58% Win Ratio Who Once Bested Mourinho & Guardiola

Sunderland are still in the market for a new head coach this summer and are weighing up an ambitious move for a manager who has one European league title under his belt, according to reports.

The transfer window opens in a little over two weeks and the Black Cats have still yet to appoint a new manager to permanently replace Michael Beale who left the club back in February after merely 12 matches in charge. Mike Dodds was handed the reins on an interim basis after Beale’s departure but guided the club to just two victories in their last 13 outings in the Championship.

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Eventually, the Wearside outfit finished 16th in England’s second tier, seven points above the relegation zone and 13 behind the play-off places. Ultimately, this was a disappointing campaign after Tony Mowbray guided the side to the play-offs last season.

A whole host of names have been linked with the vacant job at the Stadium of Light. In recent weeks, it has been reported that Sunderland have had interviews with former Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom while Will Still has re-emerged as a candidate.

Now, The Sun have released a report, claiming that the board have identified Raphael Wicky, who recently managed Swiss giants BSC Young Boys for almost two seasons, although the outlet have stated that Burnley are also interested in the 47-year-old following the departure of Vincent Kompany to Bayern Munich. In his debut campaign in Bern, he guided the club to the league and cup double but was terminated from his position back in March after a string of poor results.

Throughout his time at the helm of Young Boys, Wicky boasted a 58% win ratio. His only other managerial jobs in men’s football came at Chicago Fire in the MLS and at Basel in his native Switzerland. It was at the latter where Wicky proved himself against both Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United and Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City in the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League campaign. Despite bowing out in the first knockout round, the astute tactician picked up two victories against two of the greatest managers in football history, including an away win at the Etihad Stadium.

Writer’s View

Wicky certainly has an impressive CV and wins against both Mourinho and Guardiola are right up there in his greatest achievements as a manager, alongside last season’s title victory with Young Boys, having finished as deserving victors with a whopping 18-point gap between themselves and second-place Servette.

Furthermore, a 58% win ratio is exceptional. He has proven his worth on the continent and now may relish the challenge of taking a club like Sunderland back to the top tier of English football should he choose to accept the job.

About Adam Scully 1082 Articles
Deputy Head of Writing

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