Sheffield Wednesday are still looking for their fifth permanent manager in three years following the sacking of Tony Pulis nearly a month ago.
The 63-year-old was given his marching orders by Owls owner Dejphon Chansiri after a run of games which saw the Yorkshiremen win just once in ten outings.
Pulis was soon thrown under the bus by the Thai businessman for a variety of reasons, but what stuck out most was how unhappy he was with the style of football on offer.
Chansiri told reporters in a virtual press conference, via talkSPORT: “I was not convinced about his style of play so it was not the right choice,” before adding: “I told him I don’t like the old English style but he told me he wouldn’t play like that, his tactics would depend on the opponents.”
This is something he’ll have to get right with his next appointment and he ought to look no further than Slavisa Jokanovic, who has been linked with the vacant managerial role in the past week.
The 52-year-old has twice won promotion from the Championship, taking both Watford and then Fulham up to the Premier League, which ultimately will be the Owls’ long-term goal should they stave off relegation this campaign.
It’s been over 20 years since top-flight football was played at Hillsborough Stadium.
Aside from his obvious ability to improve teams drastically, Jokanovic has always been lauded for his exciting and attacking brand of football. Indeed, his Cottagers were once dubbed the ‘Man City of the Championship’ by the Guardian’s Paul MacInnes.
In addition to that, the Premier League’s official website wrote this about that very side: “They play attractive football based on movement and domination of the ball.”
Former Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe once lauded the Serbian as an “outstanding coach” to Sky Sports, and added: “The style of play is one that draws a lot of praise, a lot of plaudits last year for the way they did it.”
While Jordi Cruyff, who appointed him at Maccabi Tel Aviv, also praised his coaching ability, he said: “He played various systems. He does like to play from behind but he also likes to adapt himself to moments that he might not have control of. I think his reading of the game was very good.”
The Owls have endured many a playing style over the years, but this type of football is most comparable to that of the Ron Atkinson era, the very man to guide Wednesday to League Cup glory in 1991.
Time is running out this January for any new hire, so Chansiri ought to act sooner rather than later and there isn’t a better candidate than the two-time promotion winner out there right now.
He could bring shades of Atkinson back to south Yorkshire.