Jim vs Roy: Who will fare better?

JIM Magilton says that he is confident of bringing success to Loftus Road after taking over as manager of Queens Park Rangers.

Elvin King

JIM Magilton says that he is confident of bringing success to Loftus Road after taking over as manager of Queens Park Rangers.

But while the rich owners of the London-based Coca-Cola Championship-based club might agree, few Ipswich Town fans would put money on Magilton being a success in his new post.

Many are predicting that the Blues former boss will follow the trend of his four permanent Rangers predecessors since Flavio Briatiore and Bernie Ecclestone took over in October 2007, and be shown the door within months.

But will he?

How should we rate the respective chances of Magilton's current and former clubs faring in 2009/10?

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With their enthusiasm renewed by the appointment of Roy Keane, Town followers are looking ahead with an optimism that is far more intense than if Magilton had stayed in the Portman Road hot seat.

This buoyancy is based on Keane leading Sunderland out of the Championship at his first attempt in 2006/07, and there is no doubt that the no-nonsense former Manchester United superstar achieved a remarkable feat in taking the Black Cats from one end of the table to the other inside eight months.

But although he kept Sunderland in the Premier League the following season it was on the back of over �50million of signings - with a number backfiring as his team struggled at the start of last season leading to Keane's departure prior to Christmas.

So, overall a mixed start to managerial life for the combustible Keane.

Looking at Magilton's managerial career from the Rangers angle they can see a young ambitious boss who held his own in his rookie season with no funds and then led his team to within one point of the play-offs in 2007/08.

And despite the frustrations and low points of a topsy-turvy last term many in the Championship would have changed places with Town as they put in some storming away displays to finish ninth.

So a mixed start for Magilton as well, but he will surely be a better manager after his three-year apprenticeship at Portman Road.

The former Northern Ireland international midfielder obviously interviews well when his Belfast charm and his desire to do well shines through.

He captivated David Sheepshanks and company to become a surprise replacement for Joe Royle at Ipswich, and he has clearly done the same to the worldly-wise businessmen who run Rangers.

Magilton may look back after a while and ponder whether the Watford and Swansea jobs would have become available a week or so earlier.

The pressure to succeed will be intense at Loftus Road, but he will relish this and said: “The owners and myself are all of the same opinion - we want to go places.

“We are an ambitious group and we share the supporters' desperation for success.

“If we all stick together, which is very, very important, we'll be fine. Of course, there'll be up's and down's along the way, but if we show that winning mentality, success will surely follow.

“I think it's important that we bring that winning mentality into the club, starting now.

“There's always pressure on you as a player, as there is as a manager. QPR is something of a scalp nowadays and we have to deal with that.”


Roy Keane


1. Previous success in Championship.

2. High profile that will attract new players.

3. Respect he generates from players.

4. Hard work and organisation.

5. Close family life and willingness to move to Suffolk.

6. Mellow personality away from spotlight.


1. History of walking out when things get tough.

2. Spending millions on overrated players.

3. Relative inexperience.

4. More defeats than wins as manager.

Jim Magilton


1. Has now served managerial apprenticeship.

2. Commitment and desire to do well.

3. Knows Championship inside out.

4. Ability to achieve amazing 14 straight home wins, and eight away last season.

5. Self belief and immunity to outside criticism.

6. Ipswich cause not helped by negative media in some quarters.


1. Failure to gain consistent results last season.

2. Failure to benefit from �12million player budget boost.

3. Number of signings that drifted from the scene.

4. Reports of man management failings.

5. Having family mainly living away from Ipswich.