This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Burnley are considering Sunderland boss Alex Neil as a potential candidate for the vacant managerial spot at the Premier League club, should the Clarets suffer relegation to the Championship, as per a report from The Sun.
The report states that the Lancashire club are also considering the likes of Chris Wilder, Carlos Carvalhal and Nathan Jones, following the dismissal of Sean Dyche, should they be playing their football in England’s second-tier next season.
Neil’s ability to work well within a budget has been cited as a key part as to why the Clarets are currently monitoring his situation with the Black Cats.
Burnley are currently sitting two points ahead of the Premier League drop zone with five games left to play, however, Everton in 18th, have a game in hand on the Clarets.
Three of our writers here at FLW have shared their thoughts regarding Burnley’s interest in the Sunderland boss…
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As a reasonably young manager with promotion-winning experience, they can’t go wrong with Alex Neil if they were to be relegated.
He may have endured a mixed spell at Preston – but he has started his tenure at Sunderland in a promising fashion and it wouldn’t be a huge surprise if the Black Cats are promoted back to the Championship at the first time of asking.
If he is, it would be hard to see him switching from Sunderland to the Clarets because he would probably want to carry on his project at the Stadium of Light.
However, if the budget is there to secure an instant return to the top tier, he may just be tempted by a move back to Lancashire.
Alex Neil is a reasonable consideration for Burnley if they do come down to the Championship at the end of the season.
Neil has experience managing in the Championship and with Norwich he did achieve promotion to the Premier League back in 2015 showing he is capable of taking a team to the top.
When he was with Preston in the Championship, the success wasn’t quite replicated although you can imagine Burnley will be willing to invest more in their side to go straight back up.
Alex Neil would likely be able to do a good job with Burnley next year and put them towards the top of the league. Although, he is not the kind of manager you think will have them as clear runaway champions.
He certainly has the characteristics that you’d imagine Burnley would be looking for.
Alex Neil has experience operating above expectations on a fairly small budget and took Norwich City up to the Premier League.
Those two things indicate that he should be a good candidate to help the Clarets bounce back.
Were they to come calling, it’s hard to see Neil say no if Sunderland are still a League One side.
If he’s taken the Black Cats up, then I could see him turning them down and prioritising the project at the Stadium of Light.