There is a lot of talk about the number of foreign managers running "our" football clubs.
It's a persuasive and powerful argument. Benitez was brought in to re-generate Liverpool's success. Wenger turned Arsenal into one of the leading clubs in Europe. Ramos at Spurs won the club's first trophy in what seems like forever and Ranieri then Mourinho *cough*Grant*cough then Scolari have been in charge of Abramovic's millions at Chelsea.
The national team was managed by Sven before McClaren messed up and now Capello is in charge to put things back on track.
These things allow writers to wallow in the defeatist "our football's going to the dogs and only foreigners can rescue us" articles and sentiments that fill the back pages.
It has got to the stage that managers in Spain all want to work in England, where the standard of coaching is so bad that small improvements will see them soar up the league and hugely enhance their status and earning powers.
But does it actually make sense?
No, in a word.
Of the 20 Premier League clubs, only five are managed by people who were not born in the UK. And Roy Keane is numbered among that minority.
Moreover there are just three Scots (Moyes, Ferguson and Mowbary), one Welshman (Hughes) and one Northern Irish manager (O'Neil) who are not English in charge of top flight clubs – meaning fully half the Premier League's managers are English.
Moreover, there are at least as many managerial 'failures' as successes in recent years from overseas gaffers. Sven was let go after a year, Jol deemed not good enough, Grant was never up to it, Gullit has been found wanting, Santini was never in the mix at Spurs (and the less about Gross the better). Tigana couldn't cut it at Fulham and Perrin failed at Pompey.
Looking overseas, Spain has as many "foreigners" as the Premier League: Pellegrini is in charge of Villarreal, Aguirre is in charge at Atletico Madrid, Kresic at Numancia, and Schuster at Real Madrid. Italy fares better, with only Mourinho at champions Inter not being Italian.
But in an age where the Premier League has the funds to bring in any manager on the planet, the fact that 16 of the managers don't even have to show their passport go back to their home town and return to work the next day is surely something to celebrate.
English Premier League Clubs' Use Of Foreign Managers:
Arsenal - Arsene Wenger (French, 1996 -)
Aston Villa - Dr Jozef Venglos (Czech, 1990-91)
Blackburn Rovers - none
Bolton Wanderers - none
Chelsea - Ruud Gullit (Dutch, 1996-98); Gianluca Vialli (Italian, 1998-2000); Claudio Ranieri (Italian, 2000-04); Jose Mourinho (Portuguese, 2004-07); Avram Grant (Israeli, 2007-08); Luiz Felipe Scolari (Brazilian, 2008 -)
Everton - none
Fulham - Jean Tigana (French, 2000-03)
Hull City - Jan Molby (Danish, 2002)
Liverpool - Gerard Houllier (French, 1998-2004); Rafael Benitez (Spanish, 2004 -)
Manchester City - Sven-Goran Eriksson (Swedish, 2007-08)
Manchester United - none
Middlesbrough - none
Newcastle United - Ossie Ardiles (Argentinian, 1991-92); Ruud Gullit (Dutch, 1998-99)
Portsmouth - Velimir Zajec (Croatian, 2004-05); Alain Perrin (French, 2005)
Stoke City - Gudjon Thordason (Icelandic, 1999-2002); Johan Boskamp (Dutch 2005-06)
Sunderland - none
Tottenham Hotspur - Ossie Ardiles (Argentinian, 1993-94); Christian Gross (Swiss, 1997-98); Jacques Santini (French, 2004); Martin Jol (Dutch, 2004-07); Juande Ramos (Spanish, 2007 -)
West Bromwich Albion - Ossie Ardiles (Argentinian, 1992-93)
West Ham United - none
Wigan Athletic - none