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The Best Premier League Managers Of All Time

Who's better: Jose Mourinho or Arsene Wenger?

Here are the best Premier League managers of all time, dating back to the league’s start in 1992-93. 

18: George Burley

George Burley achieved the remarkable feat of guiding Ipswich Town into the top five in the club’s first season following promotion, earning a spot in the UEFA Cup and the Premier League manager of the season award in 2001. The uncle of ESPN soccer commentator Craig Burley, George was relegated the next season and never returned to the EPL. 

17: Roy Hodgson

The journeyman Roy Hodgson has coached 16 teams in eight countries but is perhaps best known for allowing Clint Dempsey to take Fulham to the Europa League final in 2010. Hodgson has also coached Premier League sides Blackburn, Liverpool, West Brom and Crystal Palace and led England to a last-place finish in Group D at the 2014 World Cup. 

16: Tony Pulis

Tony Pulis guided Stoke City into the Premier League and spent a decade with the club, cementing the Potters’ place in the league. Pulis even led Stoke to the Europa League with a runner-up performance in the FA Cup. In 2014, Pulis was named Premier League Manager of the Season for guiding Crystal Palace away from relegation.

15: Antonio Conte

Though his time in England was brief, Conte’s first Chelsea team in 2017 was a powerhouse, setting what was at the time the record for most wins in a season with 30 one year after the Blues finished 10th. Conte was sacked following the 2018 season despite winning the FA Cup and it having been the first year in which he didn’t win a league title as a club coach since he was at Siena in 2011. 

14: Alan Pardew

Alan Pardew reached two FA Cup finals and achieved promotion into the Premier League three times as a manager. He is one of four coaches to be named Premier League Manager of the Year without winning a league title after helping Newcastle return to European football in 2012. Pardew has also coached at Reading, West Ham, Charlton Athletic, Southampton, Crystal Palace and West Brom, currently ranking just outside the top 10 in Premier League games coached. 

13: Roberto Mancini

The Italian Roberto Mancini will always be celebrated for bringing Manchester City its first Premier League title in the most dramatic fashion. A last-second win over QPR in 2012 gave City the title over rival United in the most exciting finish to any EPL season. Mancini also won an FA Cup and Community Shield following three Serie A titles with Inter Milan. 

12: Manuel Pellegrini

The Chilean became the first manager from outside of Europe to win the Premier League title in 2014 with Manchester City, winning 100 games in Manchester with a 60 percent win rate, fifth highest in Premier League history when he left the club. Despite also winning two League Cups, Pellegrini was pushed out to make way for Pep Guardiola. 

11: Harry Redknapp

Harry Redknapp earns his spot mostly through longevity. Only Arsene Wenger and Alex Ferguson managed more Premier League matches than Redknapp, who began his coaching career as a player-assistant manager with the Seattle Sounders in the 1970s. Redknapp’s highest honor came in 2010 when he was named Premier League manager of the season, having helped Tottenham to its first top-four finish in 20 years. He also coached Bournemouth, West Ham, Portsmouth, Southampton, QPR and Birmingham City. 

10: Mauricio Pochettino

Mauricio Pochettino has yet to win a Premier League title but what he’s done at Tottenham early in his coaching career is remarkable nonetheless. After a short stint at Southampton, Pochettino guided Spurs to finishes of fifth, third, second and third, including wins over the likes of Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. Most importantly, in 2017 he guided Tottenham to a higher finish than Arsenal for the first time in 22 years, doing so with a team far cheaper than any of the other top five clubs. 

9: David Moyes

While most remember his failure at Manchester United, David Moyes was a brilliant manager for more than a decade with Everton, winning 218 matches with the Toffees. Moyes guided Everton into European competition for the first time in a decade and the FA Cup final for the first time in a decade. His consistent success led to him replacing Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, which never really gave him a chance. 

8: Carlo Ancelotti

A Champions League winner with AC Milan and Real Madrid, in England Carlo Ancelotti is remembered for providing some semblance of stability for Chelsea following Jose Mourinho’s departure in 2007. The sixth manager in 21 months at Chelsea, Ancelotti won a Premier League title in his first season in London, adding an FA Cup and Community Shield title as well. Ancelotti was fired just before the final match of his second season, in which he led Chelsea to a second-place finish, because he couldn’t get the best out of the expensive Fernando Torres despite having set a then-record with 103 goals scored in the season prior. 

7: Kenny Dalglish

Having been a player-manager for Liverpool for six years, Sir Kenny Dalglish coached Blackburn Rovers from 1991 to 1995. Dalglish took Rovers from the Second Division to the Premier League, winning the league title in 1995. Dalglish also had stints with Newcastle United and again with Liverpool, but his championship with Blackburn Rovers puts the club alongside the likes of Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City and Leicester City as the only teams with Premier League titles. 

6: Claudio Ranieri

This Italian manager won more than 100 games with Chelsea just after the turn of the century, but he’s on this list for what he accomplished with little Leicester City. By leading the Foxes to a Premier League title in 2016, he ended a hegemony of the top four clubs in England that had been held for more than two decades. Winning the league title with the finances of Leicester City in an era dominated by big clubs with bigger wallets is the most impressive single-season feat of anyone on this list. 

5: Pep Guardiola

Pep Guardiola was a legendary coach before he arrived at Manchester City, but he also put together the best Premier League team in history (thanks in no small part to a large wad of cash). The 2017-18 championship Citizens set EPL records for most points with 100, wins with 32, goals with 106 and goal differential of plus-76. While we’re trying to keep this list to the Premier League, Guardiola’s accomplishments outside of the Premier League must be mentioned: two Champions League titles with Barcelona, three La Liga titles and three Bundesliga titles — all in about a decade. He often has the most talented teams, but he gets the most out of them.

4: Rafael Benítez

Rafa Benítez never won a Premier League title and in fact he was often poor at getting the best from his Liverpool sides in league play. But he is also one of the few managers to lead a Premier League team to Champions League success. Benitez guided Liverpool to the 2005 Champions League trophy and to the final in 2007. He’s the only manager in history to have won the Europa League (with Chelsea and Valencia), UEFA Super Cup (with Liverpool), Champions League (with Liverpool) and Club World Cup (with Inter Milan). He also won an EFL championship with Newcastle. 

3: Jose Mourinho

The combative Jose Mourinho has won more Premier League titles than any of the managers mentioned before him on this list, having won it three times with Chelsea. The Portuguese also has an FA Cup crown with the Blues and a Europa League title with Manchester United. If you include his non-Premier League exploits, Mourinho has eight league titles and two Champions League titles (with Porto and Inter Milan). 

2: Arsene Wenger

Aside from perhaps the man ranked No. 1 on this list, no manager embodied his club more than Arsene Wenger embodied Arsenal. Wenger changed Arsenal and the English game as one of the first managers to change eating habits of British players and rely on players from outside of the UK. Le Professeur won a record seven FA Cups to go with three Premier League titles, including the epic unbeaten season of 2003-04, still yet to be matched. 

1: Sir Alex Ferguson

When Sir Alex Ferguson took over at Manchester United, the Red Devils were miles behind Liverpool as the most successful club in England. By the time he retired, there was no doubt which team was the best in the Premier League. Ferguson racked up 13 Premier League titles in 20 seasons in the league, leaving little doubt he has to be No. 1 on this list. He also added two Champions Leagues and five FA Cups. There is no debate: Sir Alex Ferguson is the best manager in the history of the Premier League.

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