The recent managerial departure of Gary Johnson from English Championship side Bristol City was perhaps a little surprising given everything that the former Latvia and Yeovil Town boss has achieved at Ashton Gate. League One promotion and a Championship play-off final pushed the Robins to the forefront of second tier football but the team appears to have lost its way this season floundering in mid-table.
As a result, Bristol City chairman, Steve Lansdowne made the decision to axe Johnson last week, leaving Keith Millen in temporary charge for Saturday evening’s 2-2 home draw with league leaders Newcastle United.
Former Charlton Athletic and West Ham United chief, Alan Curbishley has become the favourite candidate amongst betting circles for the vacant position. Punters have been lumping on the experienced manager to take the reins down in the West Country, but it would seem a bizarre decision for a manager who was, only two years ago, linked with the England managerial position.
Perhaps the perfect fit for Bristol City would be current Doncaster Rovers boss, Sean O’Driscoll. O’Driscoll turned down advances from Premier League newcomers Burnley earlier this year but it would be difficult for the former Bournemouth boss to turn down the Robins, with his family still based and settled in nearby Hampshire. O’Driscoll is currently second favourite behind Curbishley and he would certainly be the wise money this weekend before the market changes considerably.
O’Driscoll has a reputation of preaching short, attractive football which would draw back the crowds at Ashton Gate with supporter optimism dwindling in the last 12 months.
Curbishley has also been linked with the Ipswich Town position in this weekend’s tabloids of multibetzone.com. Curbishley and his side-kick, Mervyn Day have been found at Town’s last three league games and with Roy Keane under considerable pressure this could be a more realistic switch for the 52-year-old should reclusive Ipswich owner, Marcus Evans wield the axe in the summer.