Managerial merry-go-round: How likely is David Dunn to succeed at Oldham?

Interim Oldham Athletic boss David Dunn may have enjoyed a relatively solid – if unspectacular – start to his time in charge of the Latics.

But how likely is it that the former Blackburn Rovers star will succeed in the long term? Well, according to research, as a first-time gaffer, his chances aren’t that good. 

Amazingly, 56% of first-time managers never manage in England’s top four divisions again after their first taste of the hot seat.

With that in mind, MM looks at the hits and misses of rookie managers. 

Here are five risky appointments that worked out for all parties, and five that didn’t.

Five first-time managerial gambles that paid off:

Karl Robinson

The former semi-professional striker was forced to retire due to a back injury, and was assistant manager to Paul Ince at Stadium MK before being promoted to the top spot.

At the age of just 29, Robinson took up his place in the Dons’ dugout and hasn’t looked back since.

Now in his sixth season in the job, the Liverpudlian is guiding the club in the second tier of English football for the first time since they rebranded in 2004.

Last season showed just how much potential Robinson has, as he led the club to automatic promotion.

Despite being the fifth youngest manager in the Football League at 35, he is the third longest servant behind Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger and Paul Tisdale of Exeter.

Garry Monk

Already a Swans legend after ten years of playing service, Monk has further etched his status as a club icon by leading the South Wales club to their best ever finish last term.

After initially taking over from Michael Laudrup on an interim basis, Monk made the best possible start with an emphatic 3-0 victory over rivals Cardiff in his first game in charge.

2014/15 saw him step into a league of his own, becoming the first manager to complete doubles over Manchester United and Arsenal in the same season, as well as finishing eighth in the Premier League with a club-record points tally.

At just 36 and with high-pressure experience under his belt, Monk is being tipped by many as a future England boss.

Eddie Howe

Another case of a club hero stepping from the field into the dugout, Howe spent all but two years of his career at Bournemouth before landing the manager’s job at the age of 31.

After saving the Cherries from relegation during his first five months in charge, Howe went on to secure promotion to League One before departing for a short stint as manager Burnley.

Upon his return to Dean Court, the former defender has brought unprecedented success to the club, inspiring two further promotions and a place in the Premier League.

He was named Football League Manager of the Decade in April, cementing his place as one of the finest young managers in football.

Kenny Dalglish

The former Reds captain became player-manager at Anfield in 1985, remaining on the playing books until 1990 and making over 500 appearances. During his six years at the helm of the club, Dalglish secured ten pieces of silverware, including three top flight titles in five years.

Liverpool boss at the time of the Hillsborough disaster, Dalglish devoted an enormous amount of time to supporting the families of the victims, reportedly attending four funerals in one day.

1983 Ballon d’Or runner up ‘King Kenny’ resigned due to poor health in 1991, but returned as Liverpool manager 20 years later and secured the League Cup before being dismissed.

Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink

Hasselbaink has enjoyed a blistering start to his career in English management, having previously been in charge of Royal Antwerp for one season.

The 43-year-old ex-striker took charge at Burton in November of 2014, turning their season on its head and leading them to the League Two title.

Now, almost two months into the club’s first ever season in the third tier, Hasselbaink has his side flying in the play-off places, suggesting he could be on the brink of pushing them even further up the ladder.

Between retiring from playing in 2008 and taking up the Burton job in 2014, the former Netherlands international spent time coaching at Woking and Nottingham Forest before being employed by Antwerp.

…and five that didn’t:

Darren Kelly

Oldham’s former boss needs no introduction to Latics fans, after spending just 131 days in charge of the club before being dismissed last weekend.

The Northern Irishman was a left-field appointment, joining the club with no senior coaching experience coupled with a low-level playing career.

 In charge of a side hampered by injuries, many fans felt that the players had no guidance – a sentiment clearly shared by Chairman Simon Corney who dismissed the 36-year-old after just one win from his nine games in charge.

Dave Robertson

Another of this season’s casualties, Robertson was the first Football League manager to be shown the door in 2015/16.

Along with the appointment of Kelly, Robertson’s job baffled many – prior to a spell as Peterborough caretaker manager last season, the 41-year-old had little coaching experience and this season’s gamble did not pay off.

Posh won just one of his first six games, leading to Robertson’s departure and Grant McCann stepping in in his place.

Chris Ramsey

Following years of coaching development within the FA, Ramsey’s first league management job came at QPR following Harry Redknapp’s resignation in February.

Despite leading the team to a gutless relegation in May, QPR put their faith in Ramsey with a three-year deal, and he is currently orchestrating an attempt at the playoffs with his star-studded squad.

Challenged with an immense rebuilding task following relegation, Ramsey still has time to salvage his career despite the worst possible start last season.

Steve Kean

Lauded as a successful coach, Kean’s first venture into management at Blackburn Rovers has become notorious.

He was targeted by fans and was subject to numerous protests – including the release of a live chicken onto the Ewood Park pitch – eventually being ‘forced to resign’ after being relegated from the Premier League in 2012.

Backed stubbornly by Indian owners Venky’s, Kean’s spell in charge was marred by fan protests, boycotts and general disparity.

He is now enjoying a more successful and low-key spell in charge of Singapore league side Brunei DPMM.

John Carver

Until he took the Newcastle job last season, it was a case of ‘always the bridesmaid, never the bride’ for Carver.

With many years of experience as an assistant manager at Newcastle, Leeds and Sheffield United, Carver’s big chance finally came when he was handed the reins back in January.

The Newcastle fan took his club to the brink of relegation with just three wins from his 20 games in charge, and did little to help with reputation with fans or the media by declaring himself ‘the best coach in the Premier League’ – despite a club-record eight Premier League consecutive losses.

The Magpies secured safety on the final day of the season, but it was not enough to save Carver, who was replaced by Steve McClaren.

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