7 caretaker bosses who defied expectations and did the business
Roberto Di Matteo (Chelsea)
Roman Abramovich probably only hired well-liked former Chelsea player Di Matteo because he'd already paid severance packages to every big-name manager in Europe. The Italian stepped up from assistant manager in March 2012, after Andre Villas-Boas turned out to not quite be the new Jose Mourinho as many had hoped.
He started well, winning four games in a row, including a 4-1 Champions League victory over Napoli to turn around a seemingly lost tie. The season finished with a Double which would have seemed unthinkable when Di Matteo took charge: first, Chelsea won the FA Cup, beating Liverpool 2-1 in the final, before claiming their maiden Champions League crown by getting the better of Bayern Munich.
The wheels came off pretty quickly for Di Matteo, though, and Abramovich wielded the axe in November. Still, two trophies in eight months isn't a bad haul.
Kenny Dalglish (Liverpool)
Dalglish proved wrong the old adage about never going back - for the most part, anyway. The Scot had been a legendary player and manager at Liverpool in the 1980s, before returning as boss following Roy Hodgson's sacking in January 2011.
He lost his first match against Blackpool, but results soon stablised and King Kenny was rewarded with a permanent contract at the end of the season. The following year, he led the Reds to the League Cup - their first trophy in six years - and the final of the FA Cup, where they lost to Chelsea.
An eight-place finish in the Premier League was the club's lowest since 1994, however, and it wasn't enough for the board to keep him on. The acquisition of Luis Suarez for £22.8m came on his watch, though, although it's best not to mention the £35m splurged on Andy Carroll. Nor Charlie Adam...
Tony Barton (Aston Villa)
Barton’s remarkable spell at Aston Villa in 1982 was remarkable. The reigning First Division champions were making a mess of their title defence, which led to the departure of manager Ron Saunders when Villa fell to 15th in the table - just six points above the drop zone.
Chief scout Barton took temporary charge and made an instant impact, guiding the Villans to four consecutive triumphs and securing their place in the European Cup final in his fifth game in charge, a 0-0 draw with Anderlecht. Villa went on to avoid relegation and win the continent's premier prize with a 1-0 defeat of Bayern Munich.
Guus Hiddink (Chelsea)
An impressive run to the semi-finals of Euro 2008 with Russia put the experienced Hiddink in the frame to replace Luiz Felipe Scolari when the Brazilian was sacked as Chelsea boss in 2009. The Dutchman combined his national team duties with the Stamford Bridge gig, and immediately embarked on a winning run that included victories over Juventus and Liverpool. Hiddink even came close to taking Chelsea to the Champions League final, but they were knocked out on away goals after a controversial clash with Barcelona in west London.
His overall record was mightily impressive, though: Chelsea lost just one of 22 games under Hiddink's guidance, and ended the campaign with a victory over Everton in the FA Cup final. The Blues players even bought him a £20,000 watch engraved with a personal message as a leaving present - the sort of gift that Jose Mourinho presumably didn't receive in December 2015, when he was replaced by Hiddink for a second caretaker spell at the helm.