Struggle for goals and winless in 2023 – data behind Patrick Vieira’s sacking
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Crystal Palace have sacked manager Patrick Vieira after 20 months in charge.
The Eagles are 12th in the Premier League table but only three points clear of the relegation zone, having played a game more than five of the eight teams below them.
Here, the PA news agency takes a closer look at Vieira’s record.
Palace are the only Premier League team without a win in 2023.
Goalscoring has been their biggest issue – since beating Bournemouth 2-0 on New Year’s Eve, Vieira’s side have scored just four goals in 11 matches.
Their total of 21 goals in 27 games this season is the joint-second lowest in the top-flight, with only Wolves, Everton and Southampton having scored fewer (20). It is also barely half of their tally at the same stage last term (37).
The Eagles remain reliant on Wilfried Zaha for attacking threat. The Ivorian has scored 20 Premier League goals since Vieira took over – 14 last season and six this – while nobody else has reached double figures.
A daunting fixture list has undoubtedly contributed to Palace’s struggles.
Ten of their 11 matches in 2023 have been against teams in the top half of the table, with Vieira’s men having faced Manchester United and Brighton at home and away, as well as Manchester City, Newcastle, Tottenham, Chelsea and Brentford.
As a result, their next manager will benefit from a relatively kind schedule until the end of the season, with eight of their final 11 matches due to be played against teams in the bottom half of the league.
Vieira took charge of 65 Premier League games as Palace manager, the fourth-most in their history after Steve Coppell (70), Alan Pardew (73) and Roy Hodgson (148).
He managed 17 wins, 24 draws and 24 defeats in those matches, with 71 goals scored and 80 conceded.
The former Arsenal midfielder made Palace difficult to beat – while his top-flight win percentage (26 per cent) ranks below Hodgson, Pardew, Sam Allardyce and Tony Pulis, he lost a lower proportion of matches (37 per cent) than any of his predecessors.
Back to square one
Vieira’s departure means there are no black managers in the Premier League for the first time since 2016-17.
Only last month, the former World Cup winner spoke of his concerns over the lack of black coaches in top jobs after being named on this year’s Football Black List.
“It troubles me a lot,” said Vieira. “It’s difficult for me to get it and to understand it and I think that just shows there is still a long way to go.”
Vincent Kompany, who manages Championship leaders Burnley, was also recognised for his impact.
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