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Managers to consider their own transfer window

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and Supporters Direct merged to become the FSA in 2019 – so this page may contain hyperlinks that do not work and/or have missing files. Our archived pages are not maintained and will not be updated.

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The League Managers Association (LMA) is considering a transfer window for managers, similar to that currently in place for players.

At present players tied to a contract can only transfer between clubs at two periods during the season – from a season’s close to August 31 and during the month of January. Those without a club are still free to sign for anyone at anytime.

The LMA’s move is a response to the increasing instability experienced by managers who on average spend only 18 months at any one club.

“We do not think we have one silver bullet but at the moment the tenure for managers is short and getting shorter,” said the LMA’s chairman, Howard Wilkinson.

The LMA’s eight-man executive committee is expected to draw up a detailed proposal in the near future. However, the plan is still some way from being submitted to the game’s authorities and is expected to draw a hostile reaction from clubs.

The LMA’s plan could not stop clubs giving managers the boot, but they hope it would deter a club from sacking its manager due to difficulties in finding a replacement. The theory being that a chairman’s shortlist would predominantly feature those already in work.

While most fans recognise the benefits that stability and long-term planning brings to their club the move could split opinion. For every Kevin Keegan – forced out against the fans wishes – there is another group of fans who would gladly see the back of their team’s manager.

The move would also prevent successful managers from switching clubs mid-season. Portsmouth fans will be interested to see whether Harry Redknapp backs the move.

FSF poll – should there be a transfer window for managers?

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