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…
Former Reading boss Mark Bowen has registered his interest in taking charge of Birmingham City as their new manager according to Birmingham Live.
Bowen, 57, has been out fo work since the summer of 2020, having been replaced as Reading’s manager by Veljko Paunovic ahead of the 2020/21 season.
The Welshman guided the Royals to a 14th-place finish in his first season in charge of the Royals, which is impressive after taking charge of the club whilst they were in the relegation zone.
He would be no stranger to his surroundings at Birmingham though, having worked with Steve Bruce as part of his backroom staff earlier in his career.
It has been claimed by the Daily Mail that Birmingham are set to part company with Aitor Karanka in the near future, after a disappointing run of results in the Championship.
The Blues were beaten 3-0 by Bristol City in their most recent match, which means that they’re just three points clear of the relegation zone.
But 22nd-placed Rotherham United have four matches in hand on Birmingham, and the club’s supporters will certainly be fearful of relegation into the third-tier of English football.
But would Bowen be a good appointment by the club when they’re to relieve Karanka of his duties?
This could be a decent appointment for Birmingham City.
The Blues are really struggling at the moment and it seems that they’ve been on something of a downward spiral for some time now.
In truth it seems unlikely that a new manager will be able to address that slide with the problems running far deeper.
Bowen could be a shrewd appointment if the Blues are looking to the future but in terms of an immediate impact it will be a tricky job for any boss that takes charge.
It’s not really an appointment that would stand out to me as a shrewd move, I must say.
However, I think if you look at what Bowen did with Reading, he was fairly steady.
Don’t get me wrong, watching the Royals kick on this season begs a lot of questions about why Bowen couldn’t do similar with the same group of players, but Reading were a lot better under him than Birmingham have been under Karanka.
There will be more attractive options, but if Birmingham did go down the Bowen route, I don’t think it’d be a terrible choice.
Have these former Birmingham City players retired or not?
It wouldn’t inspire fans, but I think Birmingham need to face reality.
They are in the midst of a relegation battle and need results, badly, so if someone like Bowen is keen to come in for the final 10 games and try and save them, I wouldn’t be against it.
He didn’t do a bad job at Reading, replacing Jose Gomes and steering them away from danger before the campaign eventually fizzled out.
I don’t think he’d be a good option for the long-term as I think they need to go down the younger manager route, but in terms of the short-term, he could definitely have an effect.
It wouldn’t be as bad as some are making out I don’t think.