Paul Dickov Column: Management is precarious – and don’t we know it

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Someone in management that I have a massive amount of respect for has always told me that you’re three games from getting the sack or three games from getting a move up the ladder.

I don’t think that has ever been more true that it is right now.

People are getting three, four, five, six months at the minute. And with that it is impossible to have any stability or continuity.

I think it can take a whole season sometimes to get across to the players exactly what you want to do, especially if you have had a big influx of new players.

Then, if you get to Christmas in your second season and things still aren’t happening, then you have no more excuses as a manager. Your case soon wears thin.

Coming in midway through a season is very difficult. Players are used to playing a certain way, used to certain training schedules and used to different voices. You are not going to change something overnight, no matter who you are.

It makes me laugh when a manager gets the sack, someone new comes in, wins their first couple of games and all people talk about is that the struggle was down to what the old manager was doing. Then results level out and people start to ask questions about the new boss.

You need time and, something more important for me, you need the trust of the people in charge at the club. Being a manager, for me at least, is not just about training Monday to Friday and then a game on the Saturday.

There is so much planning work to be done, whether that’s with the media department, commercial team, the chief executive and especially the owners, discussing how to take the club forward.

Here I have the chance to do that.

It’s very difficult to say how long a manager should be given because circumstances dictate that.

I was massively disappointed for Danny Wilson at Barnsley when he was sacked earlier this month.

He brought in a lot of new signings last summer, and in particular a lot of young loan signings. They took a while to settle in the way he wanted to play.

And then those loan signings went back in December and a new crop arrived in January who also needed time to settle. It was difficult for Danny.

But the other side of the coin is that if you are losing games, the job is a precarious one and unfortunately, most managers learn that lesson the hard way.