After just 11 games at the helm Bob Bradley has been fired as coach of Premier League club Swansea City. Bradley had become the first American to manage in one of Europe’s top four leagues when he was hired by the Welsh team in October.
Now, after less than three months on the job the American trailblazer adds another first to his list; first American to be fired by a club in one of those same leagues.
Swansea’s American owners were inundated with criticism for “sacking” Bradley’s predecessor Francesco Guidolin in favor of Bradley after just seven games in charge, despite the Italian’s record of just one win, one draw, and five losses in seven games.
Bradley was not afforded that same measure of goodwill by Swansea fans despite compiling a comparable record to Guidolin’s.
Indeed it was just yesterday that GotSoccer wrote of Bradley’s tenuous hold on his job following a 4-1 home defeat by West Ham. At the time we wondered if Swansea’s American majority co-owner Jason Levien might cut Bradley the same slack that he gave manager Ben Olsen at his MLS club DC United.
But Olsen was never showered with equivalent chants of “We want Bradley Out” when DC propped up the entire MLS in 2013. Given time Olsen turned United around, today time ran out on Bradley.
Swansea hierarchy only recently promised that Bradley would be given the opportunity to replenish the Swans roster during the upcoming transfer window.
Bradley’s fellow New Jerseyan, New York Giants coach Bill Parcells used to say that if he was going to cook the meal, he wanted to be the one to shop for the groceries.
After a terrible first season in which it looked as if the first time head coach was in over his head Parcells won a pair of Super Bowls with the Giants with George Young doing the shopping.
But Bradley, like Guidolin before him, was saddled with a defenseless team after Ashley Williams transferred to Everton.
On Bradley’s hiring Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins called Bradley a “long-term appointment” who will “stabilize matters on and off the pitch.”
Seven games for Guidolin. 11 for Bradley. Stability and long-term must mean something different at Swansea.