With just one win in six games, Manchester City are, naturally, intending to review Manuel Pellegrini’s position as manager at the end of the season.
Clearly the Chilean is completely clueless as to how a successful football team should be run, despite winning two major trophies and making it onto the shortlist for FIFA Coach of the Year in his first season with the Citizens.
In light of this, the book has been opened on who’ll be the next boss to have a crack at operating the Etihad tactics board, with lauded duo Diego Simeone and Pep Guardiola assuming joint 7/1-favouritism.
The chances of prising the latter out of Bayern Munchen are extremely slim, given his desire for stability and time to impress his philosophies on the team, which may or may not involve converting Bacary Sagna into a holding-midfielder.
City’s impatient owners won’t be able to guarantee Guardiola the time he’ll demand, making this a non-starter.
Simeone is another unlikely to desert his job for life at Atletico Madrid for the hottest of hot seats at Man City.
After winning La Liga and coming within a midge’s nether regions of hoisting the Champions League last term, Cholo’s stock may well never be higher, yet he didn’t follow his host of departing stars out of the Vicente Calderon in the summer.
The Citizens’ penchant for all things Arsenal means they’d no doubt be keen on prying Arsene Wenger out of the Emirates, though the Frenchman’s obvious disdain for all things Manchester City means he’d surely sooner prefer to amputate his right arm than take the reigns.
But one man who knows a great deal about Wenger’s coaching methods is Patrick Vieira, currently steering the Sky Blues’ Under-21 ship.
The former Gunners skipper is a 12/1 shot to succeed Pellegrini and could well be the next best thing to the three-time Premier League winner.
His junior Citizens side are separated from the summit of the U21 Premier League Division 1 from Manchester United by the virtue of goal difference.
Familiar with the club’s infrastructure, as well as the emerging talent within the ranks, Vieira is the ideal candidate to ingratiate youngsters into the City first-team too.
This is a matter of growing importance on account of the Financial Fair Play implications that are likely to haunt the club in the coming years.