Top 10 Managers With Most Defeats in Premier League History

As once said by the great former AC Milan Captain and firebrand manager Gennaro Gattuso once said "Sometimes maybe good. Sometimes maybe shit" which holds true in almost all walks of life, but especially as a premier league manager which is arguably one of the toughest yet most exciting gigs one can get as a professional manager. There is the glitz and glamour of wins, trophies, trebles and records while majority of the managers end up facing the other side of the coin that is the  painful crushing feeling of defeat, winless runs, relegation and equally unwanted records. Nobody is immune to that, right from newbie rookies to experienced stalwarts you will find managers from vastly contrasting career paths on this list. 

10. Rafael Benitez – 100 defeats

Rafael Benitez
Rafael Benitez (Credit - The Telegraph)

Last in the hot seat at Celta de Vigo in Spain, Rafael Benítez  has become somewhat of a cult legend with his long stint in England. His longest run with a Premier League club was during his time with Liverpool. Later Benítez even managed Chelsea and Newcastle United. And for a brief moment, he managed the rivals of his former employers  – Everton.

9. Sir Alex Ferguson – 114 defeats

Sir Alex Ferguson
Sir Alex Ferguson (Credit -

Mr. Manchester United himself and everything that stood for the domination within the red side of Manchester, the former Aberdeen manager managed to make the Theatre of Dreams. His home for just about more than a quarter of a century has seen many victories and subsequently has also seen many defeats just by virtue of sheer statistical probability. In as many as 26 seasons with United, Ferguson helped his side lift 13 Premier League trophies. Since Ferguson was at the helm for 810 league games, he was likely to have a good number of defeats as well.

8. Martin O’Neill – 114 defeats

Martin O'Neill
Martin O’Neill (Credit -

Another manager who ended up on the wrong side of the history books and suffered 114 defeats in the English top flight. Although Martin O’Neill’ is on the same statistical plane as Ferguson’s, O’Neill did so in fewer games. Thus, he finds himself in the same space of  comparison to the legendary Scottish manager. The former Northern Irish International and manager was once in charge of the likes of Leicester City, Aston Villa and Sunderland.

7. Arsene Wenger – 153 defeats

 Arsène Wenger
Arsene Wenger (Credit -

Sir Alex Ferguson has 810 PL games under his belt. But the man fell short only to Arsenal‘s historic manager and long coat enthusiast Arsène Wenger. Wenger during his 22 season with the North London side led his side for 828 league games. Since the number of games is high, his 153 defeats found their way into this list. It was only under his reign that Arsenal managed to achieve the feat of finishing a whole Premier League season unbeaten. It stands as a record that remains undefeated to date for any PL club since the modern PL era has existed.

6. Roy Hodgson – 177 defeats

Roy Hodgson
Roy Hodgson (Credit - Eurosport)

Roy Hodgson is 76 and was last active in his managerial duties in the Premier League after having a globe trotting career which led him to Finland, Switzerland, Italy and England among other countries where his managerial expertise have been sought after. He last led the charge of Crystal Palace. 

Hodgson came to the top-flight scene in England first time with Blackburn Rovers. A 4-1 defeat to Brighton lately meant a total of 177 defeats in the PL. Ultimately the pressure mounted and his stay was cut short due to health complications and was  eventually relieved from his duties to be replaced by Oliver Glasner. Hodgson already has had a lengthy career involving Fulham, Liverpool, West Brom and Watford as well in the league.

5. Mark Hughes – 181 defeats

Mark Hughes
Mark Hughes (Credit -

In his playing days, Mark Hughes turned out for a lot of big clubs including Manchester United, FC Barcelona and Bayern Munich. Hughes was  one of the longest servants at United. Later his coaching career was also fruitful with him boasting the likes of Manchester City, Blackburn Rovers and Wales among others in his CV. In total, 466 league games are under his belt in the English top tier, out of those, 181 ended as defeats.

4. Steve Bruce – 211 defeats

Steve Bruce
Steve Bruce (Credit - The Indian Express)

Another Manchester United legend who turned out to be a manager after his playing days were behind him is Steve Bruce. He was also the captain of the Red Devils later went on to become the head coach Newcastle United, Hull City, Sunderland, Wigan Athletic and Birmingham City. All of these clubs have been managed by him in the Premier League. Bruce has 476 league games in the top flight under his belt which also constituted 211 defeats.

3. Sam Allardyce – 217 defeats

Sam Allardyce
Sam Allardyce (Credit -

In the rankings of most Premier League games as a manager, the perennial relegation firefighter Sam Allardyce comes in the fifth position. The man has been in charge of a total of 541 games in the PL in his career. In those 541 outings, 217  times he got the taste of defeat which is more than either of his total wins or draws. Allardyce managed to bag 178 league games in the top flight as wins while 146 were draws.

2. Harry Redknapp – 238 defeats

Harry Redknapp
Harry Redknapp (Credit - Sky Sports)

With 238 defeats, well known wheeler and dealer Harry Redknapp comes in at second place in all-time rankings for most losses as a PL manager. Redknapp is someone who has been around the block for the longest of times and has been involved with 641 league games as a head coach in the English top division. As many as 236 games were where his side won all three points. Also, 167 games ended in an embrace with the opposition manager for a point shared.

1. David Moyes – 242 defeats

David Moyes
David Moyes (Credit - Sky Sports)

Did you know who succeeded the long-standing manager of Man United – Sir Alex Ferguson? It was his immediate  successor appointed by Ferguson himself, David Moyes. Although things didn’t go as Ferguson or United had hoped they would, Moyes was a very well thought out choice. Although the trophies came about a decade too late and with West Ham of all clubs  which in hindsight is frustrating to say the least. Fast forward to the present day, it is Newcastle United who handed Moyes his 242nd defeat in the Premier League as a manager. Although the defeats highlight a small part of his career, one should not forget that he is only behind Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson in the race for the most number of games as a PL manager.

Cover Credits - Sky Sports

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