News and Views

Parkinson New Favourite For Manager Job

11 December 2018
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Former Reading midfielder Phil Parkinson is emerging as the favourite to become the next Reading FC manager after the sacking of Paul Clement last week. Parky, a firm fans favourite from his playing days, is currently manager of Championship strugglers Bolton Wanderers - one of only two sides below Reading in the Championship table. Parkinson is now evens with the bookmakers after the previous favourite, Portuguese manager of Vitoria de Guimaraes, Luis Castro distanced himself from the vacant position at Reading.

Those who put their money on Castro when it seemed a done deal will obviously be regretting that after he said he planned to stay at his current club to continue his progress there - and perhaps wait until a better offer comes along. With Nigel Howe back in charge at the club, he could well now turn to managers known from their time at Reading, such as Parkinson. Former Rangers boss Graeme Murty is also still high up on the list of possibilities at 22/1 - you can also try an online betting code. Steve Bruce was the early favourite before Castro and remains towards the top at 9/1.

Parkinson has had a mixed managerial career. Starting at Colchester United he earned them an unexpected promotion to the Championship. He then opted to move to Hull City on the back of his repuation and a promising young manager. That turned into a mistake as he lasted just 24 games and only managed to pick up 5 wins during his time at the club. He picked up his career as number two to former Reading manager Alan Pardew at Charlton. After Pardew left the club Parkinson become number one but oversaw a relegation to League One. After failing to earn promotion the next season Parkinson was sacked the following January.

His next job at Bradford City was where Parkinson hit the headlines for guiding Bradford, a League Two club into the League Cup final. His team beat Arsenal on penalties before a victory over two legs against Premier League Aston Villa took them to Wembley for the final. He went on to enjoy more cup success including a run to the FA Cup quarter-finals that was only ended by Reading at the Madejski Stadium. Parkinson's 274 games in charge at Bradford City saw him pick up 101 wins, 86 draws and 87 defeats.

Bolton have struggled with life in the Championship under Parkinson, and narrowly avoided the drop last season. However Parkinson has retained his job due to his past success with the club. After arriving at Bolton in the summer of 2016 he went on to have an impressive first season when he took them out of League One as runners up. During that season he was awarded manager of the month three times. Reading fans have already commented that Parkinson could be the right man to get us promoted out of League One should we be relegated, but question if he is the best choice for a relegation right - although he successfully avoided the drop last season. Should Parkinson be named manager he would certainly be given the full support of Reading fans due to his status at the club from his playing days.

The sacking of Clement, just two days before our league match against Sheffield United, now seems even stranger with no new manager lined up to replace him. It already felt the club was in turmoil but with Clement just 9 months into his role, and things starting to gradually improve on the pitch, the timing of his removal just feels wrong. Reading went on to fade badly in their game against the Blades and the 0-2 defeat was a fair score in a match played in front of just 12,000 spectators. That the club sent Clement marching with no immediate plans to replace him is incredibly frustrating. Reading are deep in relegation trouble and every point counts, and it feels like we threw away the chance of getting any last Saturday by unnecessarily rocking the boat.

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