Chelsea agrees a five-year contract with Enzo Maresca, plus an option for a sixth!

Pop quiz, hotshot!

Who is the last Chelsea manager to stay for at least five years?

Don't think too hard, most of us weren't even alive then. The answer is Dave Sexton, who was here for almost exactly seven years, from 1967 to 1974. He is one of only six (6) managers in our history to last that long, joining Tommy Docherty, Ted Drake, Billy Birrell , Leslie Knighton. and David Calderhead.

In other words, not a single manager in the last 50 (fifty!) years of the club's history has stayed for more than four seasons. John Neal was sentenced to four years and two weeks. Recently retired Claudio Ranieri almost got a whole four. Remember when we thought José Mourinho's (Mk.I) three seasons were ridiculously short? Since then, no one has lasted longer.

And it's not just a Chelsea thing. This is pretty much how football is played, with a few exceptions. And even those exceptions don't usually sign long-term deals, Pep Guardiola among them.

So is Enzo Maresca one of these exceptions?

Unlikely. Maybe, but probably not. These are exceptions for a reason.

So it's a good thing we give him five years (with an option for a sixth!). A few for-profit sales will then easily offset the inevitable redundancy payment, right? Even Roman Abramovich finally stopped distributing free money in this way.

(This is not an affront to Maresca's coaching skills, great or not. But it's a dumb deal any way you slice it.)

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