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The Top 10 Managers in the EFL in 2024

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Outside of the English Premier League, there are many exceptional young managers learning their trade in the EFL.

 

This article is designed to shine a spotlight on some of the up-and-coming managers looking to make their mark in the EFL and put themselves in the frame for Premier League vacancies in the coming years.

 

1. Kieran McKenna, Ipswich Town

 

In his first season in senior football management, McKenna has steered Ipswich from a mid-table League One outfit into Premier League hopefuls in the space of two years.

 

In 2023/24, McKenna’s Tractor Boys are still in with a shout of an automatic promotion place, having inched level on points with second-placed Leeds following a narrow 4-3 victory over Rotherham.

 

After 33 Championship games played, Town are currently priced at +250 in the ‘Top 2 Finish’ Championship markets for
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2. Enzo Maresca, Leicester City

The Italian left his role as Pep Guardiola’s assistant at Manchester City to try and mastermind an immediate return to the Premier League for Leicester.

 

The Foxes have been in rock-solid form, embracing Maresca’s possession-based, controlled style of play. 78 points from their opening 33 Championship games is title-winning form, but most expected Leicester to be up near the top having retained most of their key men. Last season, the squad was inside the top ten Premier League squad values.

 

3. Daniel Farke, Leeds United

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https://images.unsplash.com/photo-1587994820974-515b639d31ef?q=80&w=1962&auto=format&fit=crop&ixlib=rb-4.0.3&ixid=M3wxMjA3fDB8MHxwaG90by1wYWdlfHx8fGVufDB8fHx8fA%3D%3D >>>>> SOURCE: Photo

 

Under Farke, Leeds have become one of the most aggressive, attack-minded teams in the Championship. That’s no surprise when the likes of Georginio Rutter and Crysencio Summerville cost more than the value of most Championship clubs.

 

Nevertheless, the German boss has the winning formula at second tier level and will be hoping to get the chance to cement the Whites in the Premier League in 2024/25.

 

4. Carlos Corberan, West Bromwich Albion

 

Spanish boss, Corberan, has worked miracles in keeping Albion competitive at the top end of the 2023/24 EFL Championship. The former Huddersfield boss employs a physical and aggressively front-footed approach to good effect, maximising every last drop from his players.

 

5. Liam Manning, Bristol City

 

Liam Manning has developed a strong reputation for fast-paced, possession-based football. He secured his first gig in football management at MK Dons, coming within a whisker of automatic promotion out of League One.

 

They failed in the playoffs and, after a poor start to 2022/23, he was fired. Manning then moved to Oxford, where he also had the club pushing for automatic promotion in mid-2023/24. It was this which attracted Bristol City to Manning after parting company with Nigel Pearson in the autumn.

 

6. Michael Carrick, Middlesbrough

 

Carrick has been manager of Boro since October 2022, and he steered them to a playoff finish in his first season. In 2023/24, Carrick led Boro to the last four of the EFL Cup and the Teessiders are still outsiders for a top six finish, having suffered horrendous luck with injuries to key first teamers this term.

 

7. Danny Rohl, Sheffield Wednesday

 

The 34-year-old German appeared to be something of a leap of faith for Sheffield Wednesday, who had just two points from their opening ten Championship games this season. Since then, Rohl has mounted a fightback, with the Owls just four points from safety after 33 games.

 

8. John Mousinho, Portsmouth

 

There’s plenty of talent further down the EFL too, with first-time manager, John Mousinho, impressing at Portsmouth. The south coast club are leading the way at the top of the EFL League One, playing a good brand of attacking football.

 

9. Ian Evatt, Bolton Wanderers

 

Bolton are one of Portsmouth’s main rivals for automatic promotion out of League One. Wanderers have been there or thereabouts under boss, Ian Evatt. They are one of the league’s top scorers, with a fluid 3-1-4-2 system creating plenty of chances and stifling opponents most weeks.

 

10. Pete Wild, Barrow

 

Even further down the EFL pyramid, 39-year-old boss, Pete Wild, has made a huge impact at historic Cumbrian club, Barrow. The former non-league outfit are pushing for a League Two playoff place and may even be outsiders for one of the three automatic promotion spots.

 

Wild impressed hugely during his time with National League outfit FC Halifax Town and has an almost 40%-win rate at Barrow, despite being one of the newest teams in the EFL.

I'm a sports enthusiast, love writing about football. I have been writing about top teams in Europe, the Premier League and La Liga.

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