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10 greatest managers in English football history

English football has given rise to exceptional managers
English football has given rise to exceptional managers
Modified 10 Feb 2021
Top 5 / Top 10

English football managers are widely regarded as some of the most enigmatic characters in European sport. The beautiful game has gone through a plethora of changes over decades of trial and error and football managers in England have often effected and influenced several aspects of the sport.

English football is famous for a competitive streak that stems from legendary historic rivalries that transcend the sporting realm. Over the years, managers have both exacerbated and reconciled powerful emotions within the sport and have taken their place as unassailable figures within the framework of the sport.

The likes of Liverpool, Manchester United, and Arsenal have been immensely successful in the league over the past several decades and have a spate of legendary managers to thank for their impeccable fortunes.

The English league has given rise to some of the best football managers the world has ever seen. These illustrious names have made their football clubs potent forces for near-implausible periods of time and have also carved unique legacies for themselves in a fiercely competitive league.

#10 Kenny Dalglish

Liverpool owe much of their success to Kenny Dalglish
Liverpool owe much of their success to Kenny Dalglish

A bonafide hero and figure of worship at Anfield, Kenny Dalglish oozed charisma as both a player and a manager. The Scotsman was one of the best players in Bob Paisley's legendary Liverpool side and took over as player-manager from Joe Fagan in 1985.

Dalglish achieved a historic double in his first season in a managerial capacity at Liverpool and added to his cult status with a series of impeccable performances. The Scottish great also won a Premier League title with Blackburn Rovers in 1995 and was lauded for his ability to build well-balanced sides.


Kenny Dalglish returned to Liverpool for a second stint in 2011 and made his fair share of important signings. Dalglish remains a phenomenon at Liverpool and also has a stand named after him at Anfield.

#9 Tom Watson

Tom Watson is an English football great. Image Source: This Is Anfield
Tom Watson is an English football great. Image Source: This Is Anfield

In the context of English football history, Tom Watson's achievements are incredibly unique. Watson is credited with putting two high-profile football clubs on the map and making an indelible imprint on the evolution of the game.

The former manager joined Sunderland in the 19th century and won three league championships in six seasons with the Black Cats. Tom Watson moved on to Liverpool before the turn of the century, where he made his name as the club's first-ever long-term manager.


Watson stayed at the helm of Liverpool for nearly 20 years and was responsible for the Merseyside giants' first two league titles. The legendary coach was the first of only four managers to lead two different clubs to the league title and remains one of the most influential figures in the English league's early days.

Also Read: Top 10 attacking trios in football history

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Published 10 Feb 2021, 18:40 IST
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