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Next Blackburn Rovers Manager Odds: Early contenders include Daniel Farke, Gareth Ainsworth and Michael Appleton

Daniel Farke is one of the early favourites to replace Tony Mowbray at Blackburn Rovers
Daniel Farke is one of the early favourites to replace Tony Mowbray at Blackburn Rovers

Blackburn Rovers will soon start the search for a new manager for the first time in over five years after Tony Mowbray revealed that he will leave the club at the end of the season.

Mowbray, who replaced Owen Coyle in February 2017, had looked set to lead Blackburn to their first top-six Championship finish since the club’s promotion-winning 2000/01 campaign, however a late dip in form means they’ve missed out on the play-offs.

“I am not someone who would walk away,” Mowbray said.

“I'd do it for the group, I've had five years with this group. I look in their eyes and they're sad and excited. They know something is bubbling in the football club which is alright.

“The club need to get the appointment right.”

Mowbray is already being linked with a new job - 3/1 for Hibernian - but while we’re still awaiting for an official statement from Blackburn, the next manager odds are now available.

Below we take a look at who the club could bring in this summer…

Blackburn have now spent 10 years outside of the Premier League. A resurgent run over the festive period raised both hope and expectation that this could be the season in which they returned to the Promised Land, only to fall out of contention following a disappointing 2022 return of five wins in 21 games; Saturday’s 3-0 loss at home to Bournemouth was the final nail in the play-off coffin.

Given that they have the whole summer ahead of them, Blackburn are unlikely to rush their next managerial appointment. It’s crucial that they get this one spot on in what is expected to be a busy period of change at Ewood Park.

An early look at the next Blackburn Rovers manager odds reveals a combination of experience and youth.

One of the stand-out names receiving a lot of attention in the market is Daniel Farke.

In his last two Championship seasons - in charge of Norwich - the German oversaw two title-winning campaigns, claiming 90+ points on both occasions, winning 56 games and losing just 13.

The Canaries won numerous plaudits for their sumptuous, attack-minded, and free-scoring brand of football in the second-tier; something they struggled to replicate in the Premier League.

Farke is currently available for hire after leaving Russian side Krasnodar in March; he resigned from his post without taking charge of a single match, due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

As Farke contemplates his next move, there’s likely to be a scramble for his signature so Rovers may have to act fast if they want to have any chance of securing his services: at the time of writing he’s the favourite with Sky Bet and 6/1 with BetVictor.

It’s going to take something pretty special to tempt Gareth Ainsworth away from Wycombe, a club he’s been in charge of since 2012. 

Well could that something special be the club he grew up supporting? Born in Blackburn, and a former Rovers trainee, Ainsworth is one of the early frontrunners in the betting (4/1, BetVictor) to replace Mowbray.

On a small budget Ainsworth has worked wonders at Wycombe, elevating the club from a potential drop out of the Football League right up to the Championship, while they’ve just secured a place in the League One play-offs.

He’ll be busy for the next few weeks attempting to lead the Chairboys back into the second-tier, so Rovers may have to bide their time, yet should the club come calling we’d imagine Ainsworth will at least hear what they have to say.

Could Blackburn make a move for boyhood fan Gareth Ainsworth?
Could Blackburn make a move for boyhood fan Gareth Ainsworth?

Could Blackburn return to a former manager?

It’s fair to say that a lot has changed since Michael Appleton’s disappointing stint at Ewood Park, which lasted all of 15 games spanning 67 days back during the club’s trigger-happy 2012/13 season.

Appleton, 6/1, has since more than proved himself in the managerial arena. He led Oxford United up to League One, where he finished in an impressive 8th, and reached two Football League Trophy finals. 

He would go on to become assistant manager at Premier League side Leicester, then first-team coach at West Brom, while he's spent the previous three seasons at the helm of Lincoln whom he impressively propelled to the League One play-off final last season.

Appleton was unable to reach those heights in 2021/22, finishing the season in 17th, and then left his post of the weekend. He’s now immediately being linked with a return to Blackburn, as well as fellow Championship side QPR (16/1) and Hibernian (3/1).

Michael Appleton previously managed Blackburn for 67 days
Michael Appleton previously managed Blackburn for 67 days

There have been plenty of impressive debut EFL managerial spells this season. From Rob Edwards leading Forest Green Rovers to promotion up to League One in his first ever season in management, to Liam Manning coming within a whisker of automatic promotion up to the Championship with MK Dons.

Both managers are likely to feature in multiple markets throughout the summer, with Manning currently the favourite for the QPR job.

Out-of-work managers include Slavisa Jokanovic, Slaven Bilic, Lee Johnson, Jonathan Woodgate, Chris Hughton, and soon Mark Warburton who will leave QPR at the end of the season.

Alternatively, could Blackburn appoint from within? Damien Johnson, the club’s professional development phase lead coach, is currently around the 12/1 mark in the betting.

Full odds below...

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