Is Long-Term Stability a Priority For Bordeaux?

Poyet GDB

When Bordeaux sacked manager Jocelyn Gourvennec on January 18, it wasn’t without justification. The Frenchman only had a 39% win ratio in his 71 games in charge, winning 28, losing 24 and drawing 19. Languishing in 13th place and without a win in six games, the time had arrived for change, with Gus Poyet named the man to take the club forward.

As a manager, Poyet has had his flashes of success, but it’s probably safe to say the jury is still out on the Uruguayan as a manager. Since leaving Brighton under contentious circumstances in 2013, Poyet has managed five different clubs and hasn’t lasted longer than 75 games at any of the teams he’s been at. Poyet’s last three managerial jobs haven’t seen him pass 30 games in charge.

Real Betis were the most recent club to fire the Uruguayan after only 11 games in charge. The current climate in football for managers is ruthlessly unforgiving with it purely a results-based business. Firing a manager after 11 games reeks of knee-jerk reactions and poor management. In Poyet’s case, however, even disregarding the sacking at Betis, it’s worth looking for the common denominator.

Controversy does seem to court Poyet with bust-ups and fall-outs plaguing his career. After Brighton terminated his contract in 2013 he famously threatened to take legal action only to abandon his efforts after losing his appeal against unfair dismissal. Who can forget Poyet working as a pundit for the BBC during a Confederations Cup game between Spain and Nigeria, and claiming at halftime that the first he heard of his sacking from Brighton was when the BBC had received a press release from the Seagulls during the game.

Tales like that do question the legitimacy of Poyet’s claims and what really has gone on behind closed doors. The Bordeaux hierarchy has seen fit to appoint Poyet with the season all but over for them, relegation seems unlikely as does winning the league with Bordeaux at 4500/1 in football betting. This type of appointment is normally made with one eye on the future but with Poyet’s history over the last 5 years, is that a plausible idea?

During his time at Brighton Poyet showed he is able to put roots down and managed the club for three and a half years. His 1321 days at the club were largely successful and have set Poyet up for the jobs he has received since then. It hasn’t all gone according to plan but with every new job comes the opportunity to change the narrative.

Since his appointment at Bordeaux Poyet has overseen two wins and enjoyed a faultless start. The question remains when the results dip or the going gets tougher and more uncomfortable, will Poyet be there to see it out or will the pressure cause his relationships at the club to disintegrate? Another flash-in-the-pan tenure may give Poyet a reputation of being damaged goods.


Our thanks to Jonathan Evans for this article. 

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