Nigel Pearson’s Leicester City currently sit bottom of the Premier League table with just 10 points from a possible 45. Since Pearson took over for his second spell at the club in November 2011, he has no doubt been a major success story at the King Power Stadium. But after such a poor start to life back in the top-tier, should Leicester make the bold decision to part company with Pearson sooner rather than later?
Despite a very respectable start with back-to-back wins over Stoke City and Manchester United respectively, things have gone downhill pretty drastically at Leicester. When the Foxes followed up their impressive 1-0 away win over Stoke, with the incredible comeback win against Manchester United a week later, it looked as though Pearson’s side were more than capable of holding their own at this level.
But after a dire run of eight defeats in 10 Premier League games since, the Foxes have hit rock bottom of the league table – four points off safety. It’s always hard for a team that are so used to winning games in the Championship, to move up a level and start losing matches more often than not. The last two Championship winners – Reading and Cardiff City – have found the Premier League just too hard to cope with and have been relegated at the first time of asking.
Since Pearson took over at Leicester for a second time, he has undoubtedly improved the squad and indeed the style of football. In his three years back at the club, Leicester finished ninth then fourth, before winning the Championship title last season. After the heartache of losing the 2013 play-off semi-final to Watford in dramatic fashion, Leicester were by far the Championship’s best side last year and deserved to finally get back to the Premier League after a 10-year absence.
But we all know just how vicious England’s top-tier can be. Sometimes sacking the manager isn’t the right the thing to do. Last season, all three relegated clubs sacked their managers at some point in the campaign. It’s certainly a difficult decision for any chairman to make, especially when a manager has done as well as Pearson has over the years at Leicester.
Unfortunately for Pearson, it looks as though some of the fans are running out of patience. The Leicester boss recently had a run-in with a supporter after the Foxes 3-1 home defeat to Liverpool last week. Pearson allegedly swore at the fan after a heated exchange of words. The Leicester fan was said to have criticised the team performance after the loss.
As we touched on earlier, there is no doubt that Pearson has done a terrific job at the King Power Stadium. He got his side playing very expansive football, and made them very hard to beat. But after such a poor start to life back in the Premier League, maybe he has taken them as far as he possibly can – and maybe the Leicester chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha should pull the plug while he has the chance.