As always, The Angle... is on hand with a guide to pitchside attire:
The Tracksuit Manager
If you peer through the gloom and driving rain to the touchline, to see if there is any activity down on the bench to liven up the drab proceedings, and you see your manager wearing a sweatshirt with his initials emblazoned in the corner, I have some bad news. For, whatever the hopes and aspirations the manager set out at the beginning of the year, your team are just going to fall short.
Presumably, in a bid to be one of the boys and hold on to the past, the tracksuit wearer will try and make up for his lack of ability by becoming animated on the sideline. Sadly, the players they have bought and the tactics they employ won’t quite be good enough to make the next step.
Being a tracksuit manager is also rather thirsty work. More often than not, you will see them pacing over to the perimeter of their technical areas to clasp a Lucozade sports bottle, take an almighty swig, before placing it carefully back.
The Cheap Suit
A manager in a bad suit can only mean one thing - a relegation dogfight. Favoured by natural tracksuit-wearers from the lower divisions who have been promoted to the top flight, the bad suit betrays two revealing emotions. The first is an absolute desperation to be taken seriously, in the belief that a TopMan suit, a big knotted tie and a determined look is all that is missing from his squad that was playing in the lower reaches of the Championship about 18 months previously. The second is that, despite the determined expression, he isn’t quite confident enough to go and buy an expensive number, as he will more than likely be on the dole come March. If he is lucky enough to stay up, he is also lucky that he is not David Pleat and will not be wearing the worst suit ever made as he goes scampering across the pitch to celebrate his Great Escape.
Models: Paul Sturrock, Paul Jewell, Aidy Boothroyd, Billy Davies
The Expensive Suit
The new breed of young British managers are from the Sky-sponsored, 20-grand-a-week, post-1992 era. This means that they have plenty of well-cut, expensive suits ready to wear in yet another vain bid to be taken seriously. Graeme Souness appeared in Boys from The Blackstuff in the trademark Scouse shiny grey suit, with sleeves rolled out. Two years in
Club Blazer, Club Tie
This is the uniform that all supporters should look for when demanding a new manager. These men have experience, quality and silverware to their name. We’re thinking
Models: Sam Allardyce, Neil Warnock, Mark Hughes, Lawrie McMenemy