I dared to question the God-like abilities of Marco Silva a few weeks back, and somehow I got away without howls of abuse – probably because I only have 5 readers.
Don’t get me wrong – he’s good, but he’s not Wenger ‘good’.
Repeatedly we let early goals in or started slowly. Zonal marking was repeatedly responsible for goals we did concede. He rotated the team too often – of course, sometimes down to injury or suspension, but we often saw a winning side changed for no reason and rarely any effect. Critically – he failed to sign enough cover at right-back, and had to resort to square peg syndrome. The away form was atrocious.
What he achieved was still fairly remarkable, taking a team from near-certainties for relegation, to one that should have pulled clear.
But the job was not finished. It was very finishable. Sunderland should have been beaten. Crystal Palace could have been beaten.
At the least we should have had some element of hope on the last day. Instead we had utter capitulation.
I do not believe that you can call Marco Silva an unmitigated success. Likewise he was not an abject failure – he may have failed in his mission for a miracle, but you cannot call him a failure. He was certainly an improvement but without the miracle, he is no God. Just good.
That said, his record both with us and before, would suggest that he would be competitive in the Championship. I doubt there is a City fan of relative sanity who would complain if he were our manager next year. I didn’t believe it impossible, especially given our adoration of the miracle-less manager, that he would stay.
Alas, rumours abound that he will be the next Porto manager. If that is the case, Porto will gain not only a good manager with great potential, but a fair few followers from Yorkshire. Roadtrip, anyone?
And I’d certainly whack a few quid on Porto winning the Champions League at 100-1.
Who would replace him? The options are not great. The managers with proven track records of Championship promotion are taken or not available for Ehab-related-reasons – Warnock, Bruce, Pearson, McCarthy. Monk and Rowett are both promising managers but also with clubs.
Karanka is available and did get Middlesbrough promoted – though comes with some baggage.
However we are due a managerial failure. There is a pattern:
Molby – failure
Taylor – success
Parkinson – failure
Brown – success
Dowie – failure
Pearson – success
Barmby – not a success
Bruce – success
Phelan – failure
Silva – success
It all adds to the foreboding summer of doom ahead.