Nigel Adkins certainly knows how to get a team out of League One, with three promotions under his belt
Preferred formation: 4-4-2
Overall: P393 W172 (44%) D87 (22%) L134 (34%)
Scunthorpe: P189 (40%) D42 (22%) L71 (38%)
Southampton: P124 W67 (54%) D25 (20%) L32 (26%)
Reading: P80 W29 (36%) D20 (25%) L31 (39%)
Progressive, forward-thinking – and three promotions from League One. Plenty of clubs in the third tier would snap hands off if Adkins was offered to them.
Stepping up from his role as physio, Adkins picked up the mantle from Brian Laws and guided Scunthorpe into the Championship. And despite immediately coming back down, he took them back up via the play-offs and kept them up at the second attempt.
But the success he is most recognised for is his work with Southampton. Lifting them out of League One in his first season, he then took them straight into the top flight. Eyebrows were raised when he was sacked in the January of the first season back in the Premier League with plenty accusing the Saints of disloyalty and lacking gratitude for the work Adkins had done.
Adkins is still held in high regard for helping the lay the groundwork for the success Southampton have enjoyed since. He is seen as the first manager to mould himself in the Saints philosophy on which their success over the last five years has been built. Such a forward-thinking approach will be an attractive attribute.
Adkins’ stock is at its lowest following his disappointing spell with Reading which ended in December, though the Royals’ lack of success is beginning to look more much more inherent.
In truth, Adkins looks like an ideal candidate given his past successes. But his desire for a return to top flight management may be slightly off-putting. Should other clubs higher up the league ladder come calling, Adkins could be tempted away and potentially leave the immediate job unfinished.
Other names in the frame