Home BETTING TIPS McKenna staying at Ipswich is good news for his development

McKenna staying at Ipswich is good news for his development



Kieran McKenna might have anticipated some time to rest and recuperate after guiding Ipswich Town to the Premier League. Instead, the 38-year-old has been the subject of intense speculation about his future with Brighton, Chelsea and Manchester United believed to be particularly keen in the Tractor Boys boss.

That so many clubs of such a high stature are interested in McKenna says a lot about the job he has done at Portman Road. Under the Northern Irishman, Ipswich won back-to-back promotions playing a brand of attractive, attacking football that has caught the eye of many across the English game.

McKenna has earned his reputation as one of the brightest young managers working in England right now, but he must be wary of making a hasty decision that hinders his future development. Indeed, the 38-year-old need only look at Graham Potter as a cautionary tale of how one bad decision can stunt a promising managerial career.

Potter, like McKenna, was the hottest thing in English football management. He had established Brighton as one of the most dynamic teams in the Premier League and was pushing the Seagulls into top six contention when Chelsea came calling. Potter signed a five-year contract to take over at Stamford Bridge in September 2022.

Seven months later, though, Potter was out the door at Chelsea, sacked after an extremely challenging period. Of course, it has since become clear that there are other issues at Stamford Bridge that have contributed to the demise of the Blues over the past two seasons, but Potter still hasn’t returned to employment.

It could be that the former Brighton boss is merely waiting for the right opportunity – he was reportedly offered the Nice job last summer and was recently linked with Ajax – but the decision to join Chelsea essentially cost Potter two seasons of his career. He might never get another chance to manage a club of Chelsea’s size and stature.

On his current trajectory, other offers will come McKenna’s way in the future. He has yet to manage a team in the Premier League and will have that opportunity with Ipswich Town next season. The former Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur assistant is still only 38 and has plenty time to develop.

Xabi Alonso proves there is another way to reach the top of management. The former midfielder was presented with an opportunity to take over at Borussia Monchengladbach while coaching Real Sociedad’s B team, but bided his time before joining Bayer Leverkusen. That certainly proved to be the right decision with Leverkusen now German champions.

Alonso had another opportunity to jump ship this summer with Bayern Munich and Liverpool both interested in hiring the 42-year-old. Once again, though, he made the decision to stay put, justifying that he has much more to achieve at his current club. Alonso’s managerial career will likely benefit from this level of patience.

Of course, McKenna is a long way off the level Alonso has reached at the top of German football, but he too has yet to reach the ceiling at his current club. Consolidating Ipswich’s promotion in the Premier League next season would further highlight McKenna’s coaching ability and bolster his chances of landing a top job in the near future.

Recent reports claim McKenna is more likely to sign a new contract to stay at Portman Road than join Brighton, Chelsea or Manchester United. This is good news for Ipswich Town, but also potentially good news for the development of one of the best young managers in English football. The Premier League doesn’t need another Potter.