Who is Nigel Pearson? The inside track on the man who guided Leicester City to double promotion
Nigel Pearson has emerged as second-favourite to take the vacant Sunderland job behind Phil Parkinson after his odds were slashed – but what do we know about the ex-Leicester City boss?
Who has he managed previously?
After his playing career ended at North East rivals Middlesbrough, Pearson took a job with Carlisle United in 1998 and has since manager West Brom, Newcastle United twice as caretaker, Southampton, Leicester City twice, Hull City, Derby County and Belgian side OH Leuven.
Has Pearson had much success?
He has! Pearson started his managerial with a seismic bang. He was in the hot seat at Carlisle whilst the club managed to avoid relegation from the Football League with a legendary stoppage-time goal from goalkeeper Jimmy Glass.
Pearson also saved Southampton from relegation in 2008 then guided Leicester City to promotion as champions of League One in 2009 with two games to spare.
The Nottingham-born supremo continued The Foxes upturn in form, guiding the Midlands club to a play-off semi-final Championship defeat against Cardiff City before departing for Hull City.
The Tigers competed for a top-six spot in the second tier before Pearson left to re-join Leicester during the 2011/12 campaign. The 2013/14 season proved to be Leicester’s year, however, as they were guided back to the Premier League after a ten-year absence as champions.
The former Foxes boss then kept the club in the Premier League with a miraculous Sunderland-esque great escape before leaving the club in the summer.
Didn’t Pearson lay the foundations for Leicester to win the Premier League the following year under Claudio Raneri?
It’s widely acknowledged that Pearson, alongside transfer guru Steve Walsh, helped lay the foundations for Leicesters against-all-odds 2016/16 Premier League-winning campaign.
Indeed, one of the crucial figures in the team at the time, Riyad Marez agrees. Speaking to Goal during the title-winning season, he said: “Nigel was very good with me.
"He knew I didn’t speak much English when I arrived, so he spoke more slowly to me and he tried to teach me good things as well. It was difficult in the beginning but now it’s OK. Does he deserve credit for where we are now? I think so, yeah.”