Manager vacancy: Return for Owen Coyle?

EA Sports EA Sports
Oliver Norris October 12, 2012
Never 3 years ago

The King is dead. Long live the King, writes Oliver Norris.

Owen Coyle has received and given himself more than one biblical reference during his managerial career south of the border. Burnley fans ordained him as God, via a handmade sign at a WWE Wrestling event, before swiftly dubbing him Judas after his quick kiss and run effort from Turf Moor back in January 2010. Coyle finally settled on Moses after securing his first win as Bolton manager against his former disciples, the Clarets.

After a 1-0 win over Burnley, just 18 days after his defection, Coyle himself stated that the Burnley faithful should be calling him Moses rather than Judas after he led them ‘from the wilderness to the promised land’. This would have been true had the promised land been situated midway through a virgin Premier League season for a club one quarter of the way down a slippery slope of poor form, without any sort of coaching or medical staff remaining, it was a surprise to turn up at the next match and still see Rocky in Claret and Blue. Moses did however appear to part the Red Sea for a while but when we all followed him, he dropped it back in on us.

Now, 33 months later, he finds himself out on his ear, out of work and without any sort of holy glow to bask in. Even Phil Gartside, the man who managed to fit his entire self up Coyle’s backend only peeping out to ask the Premier League big boys to lock the door at the bottom of the league and stop those nasty lower league clubs looking at his money pot, has given up on Coyle’s high energy levels.

The north-west is alive with the sound of P45s currently with Bolton, Blackburn and now Burnley looking for new managers. Eddie Howehas jumped ship and snuggled back into the bosom of the ever-forgiving Eddie Mitchell back at his old club, Bournemouth. The inevitable suspicions that Coyle is on his way back to Turf Moor have arisen and have sparked lively debate. If Coyle was to return, his stint in the confessional box with the Burnley fans would be his most gruelling yet. Despite him never having put a PR-advised foot wrong in his comments during and following his departure, opinion is strongly against his prodigal return.

Personally, I could see it working. Coyle is the sort of manager that has thick enough skin to deal with anything thrown at him. There are very few of his old players left at the club that would bear any grudge against him. In any event, despite a fan’s wishes, the players do not share the same fierce loyalty and I’m sure would welcome a manager with a decent pedigree, admittedly the past 18 months at the Reebok has tarnished this somewhat, but the style of football and winning mentality he could foster at the club would be enough to overcome this.

It is a huge call for the Burnley board and their careers at the club will almost certainly be defined by this decision if they are bold enough to take it. Either way, John B has a job keeping Martin ‘Scrappy Doo’ Paterson from snapping at Coyle’s heels if he did rise from the dead.

What do you make of a potential return for Owen Coyle? Comment below.

  • Richard Dyer

    Hope so…

  • Jamie Smith
    Jamie Smith

    My brain says no, my heart says yes. If he’s willing to do a big, public, grovelling apology to the fans for the way he left, I would honestly take him back. Look at the other candidates…he’s just better than most of them.

  • John Whittaker

    me 2

  • Matthew John Marshall

    Not a chance.

  • Gary RocketRon Jenkins

    Lets fuckin hope not. NNN

  • Richard

    Anyone who wants Coyle back is a masochist. Look up the definition on Wikipedia. UTC.

    • Jamie Smith
      Jamie Smithin reply to Richard

      Judge purely on achievement – he’s the best Burnley manager in decades.

  • Reevo

    I would like the most successful manager we have had in 33 years back! the same one that got me to “Believe” and had me on the edge of my seat almost ever game, the one that created and developed a team I reay did know could go all the way and the same one that left to better his family but was hated for doing so is this not why Eddie went ? both had a couple of years to run on contracts … I don’t need loyalty, I have a dog ! Also don’t need to look up the word masochist Coyle for me

    • Gazzain reply to Reevo

      tbh I don’t like any of the managers mentioned But… One person i would like to see the board go far is Paulo Di Canio Great motovational manager and I think he one of the hottest managers in lower league at the mo plz Burnley FC Dont look back look forwards.

      • Chris Stanworthin reply to Gazza

        Di Canio could have a similar positive effect to that Coyle did at Burnley. Would he really leave Swindon for us though?

        • Jamie Smith
          Jamie Smithin reply to Chris Stanworth

          Been linked to Bolton – would have competition…

  • Reevo

    Can anyone can tell me why when two managers leave half way through a contract, one is sent with our blessing and the other is barited ? Further, why are there so many sheep following the anti coyle movement is it the fashion ? we played Premiership football because of him why dont so fans get it … what is there not too get? its simples he was ans still is the best manager we have had in 33 years Its a fact that can’t be argued why would you not want him back? Please don’t tell me its that old pony about loyalty was Eddie loyal in the end ?

    • Jamie Smith
      Jamie Smithin reply to Reevo

      Coyle walked out at a really bad time, didn’t offer any reason for going and generally acted in an improper manner. Eddie has handled the situation as well as could be expected.

    • Kevin Robinson
      Kevin Robinsonin reply to Reevo

      Eddie and Owen’s departures couldn’t be much more different.

  • Mike Landers

    I’d rather lose my left bollock.

  • Oliver Norris

    I’m divided myself. It’s hard to accept him back after basically sabotaging our Premiership season but I think he’s probably our best option. I don’t look back at 2009/10 with any particular fondness, it was the promotion season that sticks in my head the most. The football we played, the drive to play so many games that season, Coyle got people on the Turf believing and we bought into everything he said.
    The reason why people speak so passionately about him is because he was so good for us and we didn’t want him to leave. Compare to Eddie whose time at the Turf was neither here nor there and we’re patting him on the back and wishing him a safe journey.

    • Kevin Robinson
      Kevin Robinsonin reply to Oliver Norris

      I don’t think he’s the best man for the job at all. His success here and at Bolton were built on good feeling around the club rather than tactical genius. He couldn’t get that here again. And when the going gets tough he can’t get the team going.

      • Oliver Norrisin reply to Kevin Robinson

        I can’t agree with his perceived lack of tactical knowledge. The football we played then was the best I’ve seen on the Turf. Just look at the number of goals scored by substitutes in our promotion season, he often won us games by changing things up and sending on an alternative.
        Admittedly, he fostered a brilliant atmosphere which meant his players would run themselves into the ground for him, but that’s barely half the job.

  • Jean Fielding


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