Longest unbeaten runs by new managers
Manchester United’s 2-0 defeat to Arsenal on Sunday brought an end to the club’s unbeaten run in the league.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had led United to a 12 match unbeaten streak in the league since taking over from Jose Mourinho in December.
The former United striker took charge of his first game against Cardiff, who he managed in 2014. Solskjaer won his first game 5-1. United went on an impressive run, beating Spurs as well as drawing with 1st placed Liverpool.
However, Solskjaer isn’t the first manager to go on an unbeaten streak in his first season with the club.
Mourinho replaced Louis Van Gaal at Old Trafford in 2016 and broke the world transfer record to sign Paul Pogba from Juventus for £89 million. United went on a 25 match unbeaten during the season, but drawing 12 of the games. The amount of draws meant Mourinho’s side finished in 6th place.
In the same season, Antonio Conte became manager of Chelsea, enduring a difficult start. Following a defeat to Arsenal, the club went on a 13 match winning streak before losing to Spurs at White Hart Lane. Chelsea ended the season as champions with 93 points.
Claudio Ranieri became Leicester City manager for the 2015/16 season, replacing Nigel Pearson. After a 2-1 defeat to Arsenal in February, the club finished the season with a 12 match unbeaten run, winning 8 and taking the league title in one of the most historic seasons in Premier League history.
Mourinho had an even greater unbeaten streak than he managed at United when he joined Chelsea in 2004. They lost just a single game all season, the 9th game of the season against Manchester City.Following that defeat, the club then went on a 29 game run without losing.
Mourinho’s side ended the 04/05 season as champions with 95 points and only 15 goals conceded.
Debut seasons can be very tough for managers as they look to win the fans over and figure out their best line up. But for some, it clicks immediately and they go on lengthy runs without defeat.