Sacked: Football clubs change chiefs at four times the rate of top UK firms
Football clubs have proved they are a more ruthless group than Britain’s biggest firms this year as top clubs sacked their chiefs at four times the rate of FTSE-100 firms.
Some 53 league clubs dismissed their managers in 2022 compared to just 13 changes at the top for Britain’s largest 100 companies, as well as nine changes to chief financial officer.
The average tenure of FTSE-100 chiefs remains 5.7 years, far outstripping managers of Britain’s top football clubs who stay in the job for an average of 1.5 years.
“FTSE 100 chief executives and football club managers are both in the results business, one group in terms of profits and share prices and the other in terms of points and league positions, but in 2022 it looks like shareholders and boardrooms showed more patience than football club executives and supporters, even if headline stock market indices struggled to perform,” said AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould.
“Thirteen FTSE 100 firms saw a change in chief executive, bang in line with the post-2000 average, while a new manager pitched up at no fewer than 53 of the 92 Premiership and Football League clubs in 2022, with eight of those 53 getting in a new man (and they were all men) on two occasions.”
JD Sports was the only of the FTSE-100 to have had more than two bosses this year after Kath Smith took over the reins as interim chief following the departure of Peter Cowgill. Cowgill stepped down after the competition watchdog fined the firm over clandestine meeting with merger target Footasylum.
Régis Schultz then took over from Smith in September. Other FTSE 100 firms with interim leaders at the moment include Prudential, Reckitt Benckiser and RS Group.
“These interim appointments contributed to a total of 13 changes in FTSE 100 CEOs in 2022. This was an increase on 2021’s unusually low total of eight and another nine changes have already been announced for 2023,” Mould said.
“Of those nine, only Unilever has yet to select its new leader, as the search for Alan Jope’s successor continues.”