Friday 28 October 2016

The Addenbrooke to Zenga of Wolverhampton Wanderers.

It will be scant consolation to the recently dismissed Wolves manager, Walter Zenga, that managerial tenure has shown a decline over time and not only in the currently trigger happy East and West Midlands.

Wolves' first paid committee manager, Jack Addenbroke lasted an impressive 37 years, spanning the Victorian age and one World War.

But even if we begin at the start of the last old Golden Age with the appointment of Bill McGarry in the late 60's, time served by the boss has shown a downward trend.

McGarry's 398 games in charge during his first stint at the club was ended by relegation from the top tier after a May Monday night defeat at Molineux by Liverpool.

The maths were simple, a win for the hosts secured their First Division lives, while a win for the visitors won them the title. High drama that TV would die for, but in the 70's only radio put in an appearance to see a future Wolves captain lift the silverware for Liverpool.

Defeat sent Wolves on a footballing journey that only fleeting returned them to the top table.

Part of Wolves' Magical Mystery Tour post 1976. Blogger laughing because he's marking a goalkeeper!

At the dawn of footballing time, managers were lasting on average for around 150 matches, now it's down to about 50.

Success rate obviously plays a part in perceived managerial talent and Zenga's so so 47% success rate would typically entitle him to at least a season of honest toil, rather than the 17 matches he was actually granted.

His last game in charge perhaps sums up the knee jerk reactions prevalent today.

In keeping with 10 of the 14 league games contested by Wolves this term, their process created the better chances compared to their opponents.

In Zenga's final game in charge, typically a side would win slightly more times than they drew or lost were they have created 2.33 expected goals to 1.51 for their opponent

But not for the first time (7th April 1973), Leeds gained an undeserved 1-0 win.

Over Zenga's 14 league games, Wolves have a positive expected goals differential of 3.5 goals, rather than their actual goal difference of -1.

They've lost in three matches where they have been the superior expected goals team, drawing a further three in similar circumstances.

Their most likely current position based on process, without the sometimes perverse intervention of small sample sized randomness, is inside the Championship top ten rather than the current 18th spot that has played a part in Zenga's dismissal.

Even with their current lowly status, a more neutral division of shot outcomes over the remainder of the season places Wolves most likely finishing position at mid table........but in keeping with today's "enlightened" footballing age, the current small sample derived pecking order has already had a big say.

Spurious correlation. There is a medium to strong correlation between the first letter of a Wolves manager's surname and his tenure, and hence his Big Sam A it is!

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