Paul Newman: Sven takes a turn on the Mandaric merry-go-round

The Football League Column

Football rarely stands still when Milan Mandaric is involved, but the Leicester City chairman's appointment yesterday of Sven Goran Eriksson as his new manager completed a whirlwind sequence of events remarkable even by his standards.

Only six days ago, Mandaric publicly backed Paulo Sousa, the manager he had recruited in the summer, despite Leicester's poor start. "It is crucial we stick together, get behind the team and manager and give him a chance to turn things around," Mandaric claimed.

On Friday, Sousa was sacked. On Saturday, Eriksson was at the Walkers Stadium as Leicester beat Scunthorpe United 3-1. Yesterday, it was revealed the former England manager had signed a two-year contract. "It's got to be a landmark for this football club, a special day," Mandaric said. "Sometimes in the future we can look back and say this was truly the right thing to do."

Since leaving his England job four years ago, Eriksson has not hung around anywhere for too long, having had spells with Manchester City, Mexico, Notts County and the Ivory Coast. Given Mandaric's record, he may consider rented accommodation in Leicester rather than buying. Not counting caretakers, Eriksson will be Mandaric's seventh manager – after Robert Kelly, Martin Allen, Gary Megson, Ian Holloway, Nigel Pearson and Sousa – since his arrival in 2007.

Pearson was the only manager to enjoy sustained success, which made his departure this summer all the stranger. Pearson led the Foxes to the League One title last year and into last season's Championship play-offs, in which Leicester lost to Cardiff in the semi-finals. Within six weeks, he had joined Hull City and was replaced by Sousa.

Mandaric said at the time that Leicester had "reluctantly agreed" to let Pearson leave. However, Pearson paints a different picture. "I resigned because, firstly, Leicester had an opportunity to deny any clubs who wanted to speak to me the opportunity, but they didn't do that," Pearson told BBC Radio Leicester on Saturday. "It appears that my successor was at both play-off games at the end of last season as a guest of the club. I think that tells you something."

If it was no surprise that Mandaric sacked Sousa, it is reasonable to assume that Leicester's new Thai owners have had a major say in Eriksson's appointment. It was revealed two months ago that Mandaric had sold out to the Asia Football Investments consortium, led by Aiyawatt Raksriaksorn, who owns the Thailand-based duty-free shopping business, King Power Group.

The Football League is understood to be happy with the deal and is set to ratify it within days. However, some Leicester fans have been asking questions. For example, how tightly knit are the different shareholders in the consortium? How much do they know about English football? And what guarantees are there of financial stability given the volatile political situation in Thailand?

Eriksson, who will start work today by flying out with his new team on a week-long tour of Thailand, remains a big name throughout the football world. He is clearly highly regarded in Thailand: it was another Thai owner, Thaksin Shinawatra, who brought him back into club football three years ago at Manchester City.

Asked whether he expected to be at Leicester for long, Eriksson replied: "Yes, absolutely. I signed a contract yesterday for two years. I hope it will be longer. In football, of course, you have to get results and I know what I want here. The owners and chairman want Premier League football. I didn't sign because I want to be a manager in the Championship." He added: "The Premier League will hopefully happen this year; if it doesn't, then the year after"

Like Eriksson, such achievement does not come cheap. Leicester already operate at a considerable loss, while their stadium is still owned by an American financial institution after the club went into administration eight years ago.

Eriksson is sure to want significant sums to strengthen his squad to achieve that goal.

News
Netherlands' goalkeeper Tim Krul fails to make a save from Costa Rica's midfielder Celso Borges during a penalty shoot-out in the quarter-final between Netherlands and Costa Rica during the 2014 FIFA World Cup
newsGoalkeepers suffer from 'gambler’s fallacy' during shoot-outs
News
people
Travel
travel
Arts and Entertainment
Sydney and Melbourne are locked in a row over giant milk crates
artCultural relations between Sydney and Melbourne soured by row over milk crate art instillation
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux play teeneage lovers in the French erotic drama 'Blue Is The Warmest Colour' - The survey found four times as many women admitting to same-sex experiences than 20 years ago
arts + entsBlue Is The Warmest Colour, Bojack Horseman and Hobbit on the way
News
Two giraffes pictured on Garsfontein Road, Centurion, South Africa.
i100
Environment
View from the Llanberis Track to the mountain lake Llyn
Du’r Arddu
environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
News
Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleBenidorm, actor was just 68
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
News
people
News
Morrissey pictured in 2013
people
News
A scene from the video shows students mock rioting
newsEnd-of-year leaver's YouTube film features playground gun massacre
News
i100
Life and Style
The director of Wall-E Andrew Stanton with Angus MacLane's Lego model
gadgetsDesign made in Pixar animator’s spare time could get retail release
News
peopleGuitarist, who played with Aerosmith, Lou Reed and Alice Cooper among others, was 71
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices