If you want evidence of management ruthlessness, never mind Wall Street, the City or for that matter, politics, then check out the English Premier League. Scolari, the Gene Hackman lookalike who was once the manager of a World Cup winning side with Brazil, no less, has been sacked as manager of Chelsea by its Russian owner. Chelsea are only a few points adrift of Manchester United, the leaders. Tony Adams has been fired as manager of Portsmouth, which is near the bottom end of the table. A few weeks ago, Paul Ince, a former midfielder with Manchester United and West Ham, was sacked from his job. At Tottenham, they have been through about three managers in as many years. The same merry-go-round operates at such febrile clubs as Manchester City, Newcastle, Bolton or West Ham. In the latter case, you can bet the cries will go up that its current, relatively new manager, Zola, should be headed for Chelsea, where he is rightly adored as a legend. Against all this, it seems mildly incredible that Arsene Wenger has lasted so long at Arsenal, and of course that Sir Alex Ferguson has reigned for more than two decades at Manchester United.
It is as if the credit crunch has barely begun to make itself felt at the world of English football. Some time ago I wrote about the wrangles between players and clubs over contracts. As far as the sackings of managers go, the world of football looks more cut-throat than ever.