June 14, 2024

Leicester City are facing a huge decision on the managerial position at the club as they prepare for life back in the Championship.

Dean Smith arrived at the King Power Stadium in April on a short-term contract to replace Brendan Rodgers, but he was unable to keep the Foxes in the Premier League after picking up just two wins from his eight games in charge.

According to The Telegraph, the 52-year-old has held talks with the club’s board and has support from the hierarchy, while likes of Ipswich Town’s Kieran McKenna, Scott Parker, Enzo Maresca, Steven Gerrard and Graham Potter have all been linked.

Should Leicester City stick with Dean Smith?


Smith has a good track record in the Championship having done a commendable job with Brentford and leading Aston Villa to promotion in the Premier League in 2019, but his previous spell in the second tier with Norwich City should raise concerns.

The Canaries did enjoy a positive start to the season and were among the early automatic promotion contenders, but Smith was sacked in December after a poor run of form with the club sitting fifth in the table.

It could be said that Smith was unfortunate to be dismissed when his side were in the play-off places, particularly considering Norwich finished 13th under his replacement David Wagner, but there is no doubt it was a disappointing spell for Smith at Carrow Road.

Although Smith inherited a tough situation at the King Power Stadium with little time to turn around the fortunes of an underperforming squad, he has struggled to make an impact, and it would be too much of a gamble to allow him to continue.

With Ipswich boss McKenna said to have emerged on the Foxes’ managerial radar, and they should make the 37-year-old their top target. He is, simply, an upgrade on Smith.

Why should Leicester City appoint Kieran McKenna?

McKenna led the Tractor Boys to promotion from League One this season, building a side playing, attractive attacking football and instilling a winning mentality in his squad.

Ipswich scored an incredible 101 league goals this campaign, but McKenna’s men also conceded the fewest goals in the division, stats which underline the Northern Irishman’s coaching ability.

The Tractor Boys were in relentless form in the second half of the season and went unbeaten in their last 19 games, with McKenna proving he is able to handle the pressure of the promotion race, a characteristic which would make him well-equipped for the Foxes job which is likely to come with high expectations.

Leicester are facing a significant rebuild this summer with the likes of Caglar Soyuncu and Youri Tielemans departing at the end of their contracts and key players such as James Maddison and Harvey Barnes almost certain to depart.

But McKenna could be trusted to put together a squad capable of challenging for promotion as his recruitment has been a key part of his success at Portman Road, with the January additions of Massimo Luongo, George Hirst, Nathan Broadhead and Harry Clarke proving to be a game-changer for the Tractor Boys.

Ipswich Town boss Kieran McKenna explains why he quit Manchester United for  Portman Road | ITV News Anglia

Can Leicester City actually land Kieran McKenna?

It could be tough to convince McKenna to leave Ipswich given their ambition and financial might, but there is huge potential for success at Leicester, as shown by their Premier League win in 2016 and FA Cup victory in 2021.

McKenna has established himself as one of the most highly-rated coaches in the EFL and while it is uncertain whether he would be interested in the role, it would be a significant coup for the Foxes to land his signature.

 

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