When Sam Allardyce left his position as England manager after only one game, one of the most interesting managerial experiments in recent years was brought to an abrupt end. For many, Allardyce was destined to succeed as the England manager what with his famous capacity to build teams for whom the whole was greater than the sum of the parts.
Whether or not this England experiment would have worked, we will never know. What we do know, though, is that a number of job openings have appeared in recent weeks that may be perfect for the man known more affectionately as Big Sam.
RealSport looks at three of these jobs, assessing the pros and cons of each one as a potential places of employment for the man from Dudley.
1 US Men's National Team
ESPN have reported today that Sam Allardyce is interested to enter into talks about the possibility of coaching the US Men's National Team. The USA were recently knocked out of the World Cup in the qualifying stages after a loss to Trinidad and Tobago combined with a freak set of results elsewhere in the CONCACAF group to leave them outside of qualifying places. This led to the departure of the USA's erstwhile coach Bruce Arena, leaving an inroad into the team for Allardyce.
The USA job has much to offer the man who has never been relegated at any of his clubs. In the aftermath of his dismissal as England manager, Allardyce stated that he wanted time away from the game. With the international schedule much lighter than the domestic, the USA job would present Allardyce with a way in which to ease back into management.
As for the job itself, the opportunity to live in America, coupled with the chance to make his mark in competitions and qualifying groups which are set up to maximise the USA's chances of success make the prospect and attractive one for Big Sam.
With Scotland falling at the final hurdle in World Cup qualifying, prompting the national team coach Gordon Strachan's resignation, Sam Allardyce might take a different route into international management. In addition to the sorts of benefits that the USA would offer him, Allardyce might prefer the Scotland job given its proximity to England and his familiarity with British football.
That said, there are also negative aspects involved in such an appointment for Allardyce. The structural bias to the USA in their qualifying groups is certainly not there for the Scottish National Team and Allardyce would go into every competition the underdog. With FIFA reallocating World Cup places continent by continent to allow for a fairer spread of competitors, the current situation is only set to get worse for Scotland.
On the other hand, what with Strachan's comments about Scotland's genetic 'inadequacies' which he claimed led to them being the second smallest team in Europe for World Cup qualifying, perhaps it would be an advantage for them to have a manager called Big Sam?
3 Leicester City
With Craig Shakespeare being relieved of his duties at Leicester City today, Sam Allardyce might choose to re-enter football management in the division in which he had so much success.
Where Leicester has been somewhat of a poisoned chalice for managers in recent years, Allardyce will be well aware of the unique context which led to this being the case. A so-called 'fairytale' Premier League win in 2015/16 saw the club injected with huge amounts of money which, despite the immediate benefit it seemed to promise, saw the club sack two managers in two seasons.
Where the pressure to succeed is high, then, there is also a rich crop of talent at the club which would be in excess of anything that Allardyce had worked with in the past. Without having purchased any of these players himself, he would be able to protect himself from expectations to some extent whilst simultaneously benefitting from the quality of player at the club.
Which club do you think that Sam Allardyce should join as he makes the switch back into management? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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