There are more former Premier League players than ever currently in managerial roles in the English top-flight. To be a successful player and manager is much harder than just being one. Not all former players want to manage when they retire, but the most competitive do. Here is a list of former Premier League players that are now managers in the division and how they got there.
Patrick Vieira was the type of player that Arsenal fans still dream about today even if they currently sit in fourth place in the league. He was a midfield general and captained the side to Premier League titles as well as FA Cup wins. He was an integral part of the Gunners’ untouchable squad when they went unbeaten in the 2003/04 season.
When his career finished at Manchester City after five years in the Italian Serie A. After retiring he went into a coaching role at Manchester City’s youth academy and he followed this up in 2015 when he became the manager of the club’s reserve team.
His initial first-team managerial role came at New York City FC which is owned by the same people that own Manchester City. He did well here, moving them up in the overall rankings during his tenure. Then, in 2018 he returned to France and joined Nice, he didn’t set the league alight and was sacked from this role in November 2020.
The main Crystal Palace news of the summer was that Vieira has been appointed as the new Eagles’ manager as Roy Hodgson had retired at the end of the 2020/21 season.
In his first season so far he’s done a great job helping Palace to reach the FA Cup semi-finals and well away from the relegation battle. He has proved those that thought he was going to fail wrong as many thought he’d be the first manager of the season sacked.
Frank Lampard is one of the most iconic and successful midfielders in Premier League history. The former Chelsea player made 648 appearances for the Blues and scored 211 goals from midfield. He also won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups, two League Cups, the Europa League, and the Champions League during this golden era of Chelsea football club.
After retiring from playing football, Lampard was appointed as manager of Championship side Derby County in May 2018. This was after just one season as a pundit with BT Sport. He took Derby to the Championship playoffs in 2019 but lost out in the final to Aston Villa 2-1.
Lampard left Derby County to become Chelsea’s new head coach after Maurizio Sarri left Stamford Bridge. Whilst Chelsea fans loved this appointment it was too big a job to take on so early in his managerial career and he was sacked by the club after 18 months in the role.
Lampard took some time off, but clearly he wanted to get back into managing at some point and after a year out, he landed a role at Everton this year.
Mikel Arteta is a former Spanish midfielder who enjoyed a successful career as a player in the Premier League. Arteta won the FA Cup with Arsenal and he enjoyed a great spell with current West Ham manager David Moyes at Everton.
Arteta started getting involved in coaching when he was still at Arsenal, working with the under-18s squad. After retirement, Arteta joined Manchester City to work alongside Pep Guardiola and learn the craft from one of the greatest managers of all time.
Following Unai Emery’s exit from Arsenal, he reunited with his former club this time as the manager of the Gunners. He became the first person to win the FA Cup with Arsenal as a captain and manager. After a testing start to the current season, he has guided Arsenal into a great position for the Champions League qualification. They sit three points ahead of Tottenham in 5th and that’s with a game in hand.
Gerrard was a Liverpool legend, racking up over 700 appearances at the club he has loved since he was a boy. In that time, he never managed to win the Premier League but he did win two FA Cups and three League Cups in his time at Anfield. Along with the UEFA Champions League in 2005 in the thrilling comeback match against AC Milan.
Gerrard’s first managerial role came when he took over at Scottish giants Rangers in 2018 and managed to lead them to their first league title in 10 years. The Rangers fans loved him there, but he couldn’t refuse the opportunity to manage Aston Villa when Dean Smith was let go there.
Out of the managers on this list, he’s the one with the least managerial experience in the Premier League, but only just. Villa are looking like a better side since he’s come in and he’s even managed to bring his former clubmate, Philippe Coutinho, to Villa Park.
Although not all of these former players have leaped to immediate success as managers, it’s good to see them try their hands at the toughest football jobs in the country.
Former players over the years have always gone into management, but only a select few have managed to replicate the success they had as players. We can’t wait to see what the end of the season has in stock for these managers as well as the 2022/23 campaign.