Fulham have won one competitive match since April 12th. They have one point in the league so far. There have been head scratching decisions in the lineups. His press conferences and letters seem full of excuses. He's alienated fans, staff, and ex-players. If some reports are to be believed, many of the current players are not very happy with him either.
What are the pro's of keeping him? I can't find any. Normally I'd say continuity. But keeping continuity with a team that hasn't gotten results doesn't strike me as the smartest thing in the world to do.
The problem with firing Magath is, who replaces him? The assistants are mostly people Felix has brought in, and if you're going to fire him; they need to go as well. The only two who could stick around are Peter Grant and Scott Miller. Neither seems like a viable candidate. To promote someone from within, Fulham may need to look down to the academy staff.
Keeping that in mind, who are realistic candidates to take over the job? I've come up with a few, but there's probably an endless supply of candidates.
His pedigree can't be argued with. He replaced Jurgen Klopp at Mainz and got them to finish as high as fifth, getting them into the Europa League. He was approached for bigger jobs (Schalke and Leverkusen). Then for some reason he stepped down. Mainz has refused to let him out of his contract. I have a feeling they would allow him to manage in another league and are only blocking him from taking another Bundesliga job. The biggest question would be, would he want the job? Fulham can probably pay him more than he'd make in Germany. But coming to the Championship is definitely a step down from where he was before.
The other biggest downside is that he's German. That shouldn't be a problem. However, after the bad taste Magath has left in the mouths of fans; how will they react to another German coming in?
We suggested him as a replacement last time Fulham were searching for a new manager. At the time his biggest weakness was that his only success had been in MLS and international football. Since then, he's had a more than respectable run at Stabaek in Norway. He's kept that very small club solidly midtable. I know Norway isn't England, but Bradley has now proven he can manage a European club team.
With only seven games left in the Tippeligan season, Stabaek aren't likely to be relegated. It wouldn't surprise me if they allowed Bradley out of his contract to move to a bigger opportunity.
Here's a name that should be familiar to Fulham fans. Lewington is currently an assistant under Roy Hodgson for England. However, an offer to manage a club full time might be enough to lure him away. That is, if he has any aspirations of being a first team manager. If so, it would be a great opportunity for him. He also would strengthen ties back to the last good run Fulham had. Maybe it's better to cut ties to the past and move forward, but from the fan perspective I think this would be a popular move.
Danny Murphy is immensely popular with the supporters of the club. Danny Murphy knows a lot about the game. Those are the positives. The negatives are that Danny Murphy has never worked in a coaching or managerial position before. That might not be the worst thing in the world however and Garry Monk is proving that you can succeed while being thrown right into the fire.
The first of the two internal candidates. Symons has had success working with the Fulham academy. That's a big plus as the players making up the spine of the first team are now recent academy graduates. I'd have no problem giving him the job. However, there are two issues. The first is, that he may be perfectly happy and even prefer working with the academy. Not everyone has the desire to be a manager for a first team squad. Some people may prefer to coach youngsters. The second issue is that if you move him up, who replaces him at the academy? If Fulham are to be promoted and have a sustainable run in the EPL, it will be imperative for them to have an academy that can churn out players to strengthen the squad and to sell on. If Symons is promoted, he must be replaced with someone just as good. Then there is the chance he fails as the first team manager. If that were to happen you could lose the strength of your academy and your manager at the same time. That would be a double blow that would be hard to take.
Another academy coach, Keen was brought into to take over for Steve Wigley. He has an impressive background working with youth. However, he doesn't have a long history working with the youth Fulham currently have. If Magath is sacked and you need a caretaker until someone like Bradley shows up, you could do worse. However, I don't believe he'd be the right guy to step forward full time.
This one might be a reach. Steve Wigley was amazing coaching the U18's. Why exactly did he leave? Was it because he was getting a chance to work with a first team, at a club he played for, and with a manager he had worked for before? All of those things are true for him at Nottingham Forest. And if that was the reason, getting a chance to be the full time manager would be another jump for him. He'd also step into a situation where many of the players are ones he has successfully coached. However, if the move to Forest was less about ambition and more about turmoil at the club, would he want to come back?
I'm saving him for last. He's actually my favorite to take over. That won't be a popular decision. Most people remember the way his Stoke teams played. They weren't fun to watch, but they mostly got results. However, if you watched his Crystal Palace team last year; you'll notice that they didn't play like Stoke. Pulis is a very smart manager. He's perfectly capable of adapting his tactics to get the most out of the squad he has. His ideal form of football might not be pretty but it gets results and he's more than happy to change things up if the squad makeup demands it. If Pulis were to come in, I'd be shocked if Fulham didn't finish in a playoff spot even after the poor start.
However, would Pulis come? There's a very good chance a premier league job opens up soon. West Ham, West Bromich Albion, and Newcastle could all be sacking their managers soon. History says that there's always a few job openings before the winter window. Might he rather bide his time and see what comes up?
So that's my take, but what say you?