Barnsley were one of a trio of EFL clubs to part with their manager this week after they lost Daniel Stendel on Tuesday.
A host of former Championship managers have made the bookies shortlist, and two men have already attracted some interest from the Tykes – as per the Mirror (09/10, page 53).
One of these potential candidates is former Bolton Wanderers and Bradford City boss Phil Parkinson, who is out of work after resigning from the Trotters in August.
There is no doubt Parkinson did a job he could be proud of given the circumstances at the University of Bolton Stadium and achieved some memorable moments at Bradford City, including getting to the League Cup final in 2013 and knocking Chelsea out of the FA Cup in 2015.
He does have moments in his career that can be hailed as great achievements but if Barnsley are to appoint him it could prove to be step back for the Tykes.
Here are three reasons why that could be the case…
Championship relegation seems a trait of his
Barnsley have been a little bit of a Yo-Yo club of late. Promotion in 2016 was followed by relegation in 2018, then immediate promotion back to the Championship in 2019. They will be keen to not repeat this feat and try and establish themselves as a Championship side once more.
Parkinson has two Championship relegations on his CV, although as acknowledged, the circumstances at Bolton did not help he was relegated from the Championship as recently as May.
He also was in charge of Charlton Athletic when they slipped into the third tier in 2009, the first time in 30 years. He also left Hull City in 2006 with the club in the Championship relegation places.
Barnsley fans will feel, if Stendel’s replacement does not keep them up, it would of undone all the good work the German had done the previous season at Oakwell.
He may not lift the spirits
It is hard for a manager to come into a new job and lift the spirits of the players and fans when his own spirits will be down. Parkinson has lost 17 Championship matches and only managed three league wins since Boxing Day.
He will face a struggle to lift the spirits of a Barnsley side who haven’t won since the opening day. The players will be wanting someone who they can trust to come in and improve morale and performances and after last seasons humbling at Bolton, Parkinson may not be the man to do that.
He has, unfortunately, got used to losing over the last couple of seasons with Wanderers. In a game where mentality is so important, the Barnsley job could be one that’s a bit to soon for Parkinson.
The appointment could undo Stendel’s good work
Barnsley fans were left so disappointed with the news of Stendel’s departure they threw their former boss a leaving party. Barnsley fans gathered with Stendel in town centre for some drinks and to say farewell to the man who bought them back to Championship.
Although disappointed with news of Stendel’s departure, Tykes fans would arguably be more disappointment should the club appoint someone who would undo Stendel’s work.
He implemented a style of play that used quick passing and effective counter attacks, which was evident in the opening day win against Fulham.
Parkinson, at Bolton and Bradford, got used to playing longer balls and utilising big target men such as Gary Madine and James Hanson.
With expansive play dictated by the likes of George Evans and Alex Mowatt, feeding striker Cauley Woodrow, the Tykes have continued to play some good football.
It would be seen as a step backward if they were to appoint someone who could revert to long balls and muscular play, which may end up culminating in relegation and being back to square one.