Southgate, Hoddle, Robson: Ranking every England manager from best to worst

  • Tom Ward
Every England manager ranked from best to worst

Gareth Southgate was regarded as an underqualified candidate when he was appointed England manager in September 2016. 

There had been times during his spell in charge of Middlesbrough where he looked hopelessly out of his depth at the Riverside Stadium before eventually being given the sack.  

But he has proved everyone wrong, including Gary Neville, taking the Three Lions from the semi-finals of the World Cup to the final of this summer’s Euro 2020.   

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But how do his achievements match up against those that came before him?

We’ve ranked every England manager from best to worst based on their success.  

Agree or disagree? Let us know in the comments! 

1. Alf Ramsey (1963-1974)

Affectionately known as ‘The General’, Sir Alf Ramsey played for England 32 times between 1948 and 1953, captaining the side three times, scoring three goals and appearing in the World Cup in 1950.

But it was several years later when he would write his name in the history books forever. Ramsey remains the only manager to have won a major tournament, winning the World Cup with his ‘Wingless Wonders’ in 1966.  

2. Gareth Southgate (2016-present)

“Looking back on when we first met
I cannot escape and I cannot forget
Southgate, you’re the one, you still turn me on
Football’s coming home again
(One, two, three, four) whoa, whoa
Looking back on when we first met
I cannot escape and I cannot forget
Southgate, you’re the one, you still turn me on
Football’s coming home again
Southgate, you’re the one, you still turn me on
Football’s coming home again”

3. Bobby Robson (1982-1990)

Alan Shearer, who is a patron of the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, told The Sun in 2019: “He has left an unbelievable legacy.

“It is incredible the amount of money his foundation has raised and how many lives have been saved because of it.

“It tells you everything about what Sir Bobby was like as a man and how respected he was, inside and outside of football.”

Terry Venables, England manager

4.Terry Venables (1994-1996)

“Ev’rybody loves you, baby. We’re all going England crazy.”

Memories of Paul Gascoigne at Euro ’96. 

5. Sven-Goran Eriksson (2001-2006)

Sven-Goran Eriksson had everything going for him – the good looks, the charm, and the personality.  

But for whatever reason, he could never quite get it to click when it mattered the most. 

Still, he managed to get us to two Euro semi-finals, which is more than can be said for most on this list.  

6. Walter Winterbottom (1946-1962)

A bit before my time I’ll admit but he seemed to do a pretty decent job by all accounts. A solid B+. 

7. Ron Greenwood (1977-1982)

Not bad, but not great either, perhaps somewhere in-between, which is probably why we’ve got him slap bang in the middle between Walter Winterbottom and Glenn Hoddle.

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Glenn Hoddle (L) and Gary Lineker (R)

8. Glenn Hoddle (1996-1999)

The good, the bad and the ugly is probably the best way to describe Glenn Hoddle’s three years in charge of England. 

The good was very good, the bad was very bad, and the ugly… well, let’s just save that for a rainy day. 

9. Roy Hodgson (2012-2016)

You do have to feel a bit sorry for Hodgson, he clearly so desperately wanted to make it work.

But the trouble is, nobody else did.  

10. Don Revie (1974-1977)

Left to pick up the pieces after Ramsey’s acrimonious departure, Revie was left clutching a poisoned chalice. It wasn’t long before he followed suit. 

11. Fabio Capello (2008-2012)

It’s quite amazing that Capello stayed in charge for as long as he did which raise more questions about the FA than anything else. 

Kevin Keegan in charge of England circa 1999

12. Kevin Keegan (1999-2000)

Like Hoddle, Keegan was a much better player than he was manager, which is a shame considering what he achieved during his playing career. 

13. Sam Allardyce (2016)

“I’m absolutely delighted that I now sit in this privileged position,” Sam Allardyce said after landing the England manager’s job.   

He promptly left his post by mutual agreement with the Football Association some 67 days later after it emerged that he had offered advice on how to ‘get around’ rules on player transfers.  

But at least he has a 100% win rate, that’s got to count for something, right? 

14. Graham Taylor (1990-1993)

Taylor was a true gentleman, but his England team bored people to literal tears, including some of his own players. 

15. Steve McClaren (2006-2007)

The least said about that one, the better. 

McClaren was appointed England manager in August 2006, but was dismissed a year later after England failed to qualify for Euro 2008, and was subject to strong criticism from fans and pundits alike.    

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