Some of these tacticians have gone on to have successful careers elsewhere.
The Premier League is one of the toughest leagues in the world. It is highly competitive and physical in nature. For this very reason, only the best managers are hired by these clubs. While experience gathered over the course of a long time often makes successful managers, the Premier League has also seen some of of the youngest tactician being appointed by different clubs.
As Tottenham Hotspur have announced that Ryan Mason will be the interim coach till the end of the season, the decision brings back memories for many. Here are the top five youngest managers in the Premier League.
5. Andre Villas-Boas (Chelsea) – 33 years, 301 days
Chelsea announced the appointment of Andre Villas-Boas in July 2011. The Portuguese had won a treble of trophies with FC Porto in the previous season, including the UEFA Europa League. The tactician was merely 33-years-old at the time, as old as players like Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba in the squad.
The Portuguese lasted only one season at the Stamford Bridge. Tottenham Hotspur signed him in the following season. He later had stints with teams like Zenit St.Petersburg, Shanghai Port and Olympique de Marseille.
4. Gianluca Vialli (Chelsea) – 33 years,227 days
Gianluca Vialli is another figure at Chelsea who managed the team at a very young age. In 1998, Vialli took the role of player-manager after Ruud Gullit departed from the club. Vialli became the first Italian manager to take charge of a Premier League club.
Vialli retired at the conclusion of the 1998/99 season and took up the role of manager full-time. The tactician led the Blues for 129 games, winning 67 of them. He went on to manage Watford later on in the league but lasted 348 days at the job. He is recently working as a team coordinator for the Italian national team for the upcoming Euros 2020.
3. Chris Coleman (Fulham) – 32 years, 313 days
One of the youngest Premier League managers of all time, Chris Coleman ended his professional playing career at Premier League side Fulham in 2002. He immediately took up a position as assistant manager at the outfit. However, he took up the role of the manager at the club just before the end of the 2002/03 season. The Welshman was only 32 years and 313 days old at the time.
Interestingly, Coleman did a great job at Fulham, leading the team for the remaining four years. He was at the helm for 171 games as manager of the club. Coleman left the club in 2007 and joined Real Sociedad ahead of the 2007/08 campaign. The tactician later had stints with the Wales national team and Sunderland. He is currently without a job.
2. Attilio Lombardo (Crystal Palace) – 32 years, 67 days
Attilio Lombardo joined Crystal Palace in July 1997 from Juventus. The transfer came as a shock to many at the time. The Italian joined the London-based club and following Steve Coppell’s migration to a director’s role at the club, Lombardo was promoted as player-coach.
He became the youngest Premier League manager at that time, a record which stood until 2021. At 32 years and 67 days old, Lombardo was handed the reins of the South London outfit. “I had half an hour to make a decision and it felt like being run over by a lorry,” the Italian admitted during his first press conference. He is currently the assistant manager at the Italian national team.
1. Ryan Mason (Tottenham Hotspur) – 29 years, 312 days
Tottenham Hotspur announced the departure of Jose Mourinho as the manager of the club on April 19, 2021. The Portuguese was replaced by Spurs’ former trainee and academy coach, Ryan Mason. The former Hull City player has also featured for the North-London outfit as a player in the past. The 29-year-old had to retire from football as a player due to a horrific head injury.
Following his appointment as a caretaker manager, Mason took the top spot among the youngest managers in the Premier League for his own. The Englishman won his first game in-charge against Southampton, however, lost in the EFL Cup final against Manchester City in the next game.