Connect with us


QPR confirm appointment of new head coach while MK Dons sack theirs

QPR confirm the appointment of new head coach Neil Critchley while MK Dons sack theirs, Liam Manning, after a poor season in charge.

MK Dons have sacked head coach Liam Manning following Saturday’s home defeat by Fleetwood Town, which saw his side lose 2-1.

The 37-year-old was named back in August 2021 and led the Dons to a third-placed finish and League One playoff spot last season.

But they are now 23rd in the third tier table with 15 points from 20 matches and have only won one of their past 11 league games.


Milton Keynes Dons Football Club have parted company with Head Coach Liam Manning.

Assistant Head Coach Chris Hogg, Assistant First-Team Coach David Wright and Goalkeeper Coach Darren Smith will also depart the Football Club.

Sporting Director Liam Sweeting commented: “Liam, Chris and David have worked tirelessly over the last 16 months and we are hugely grateful for their dedication as well as what they were able to achieve on and off the pitch, particularly last season.

“As well as being thoroughly professional and dedicated, they have represented the club impeccably throughout their time with us. Our thanks as well to Darren, who stepped in to help us during a difficult period.

“Ultimately, given the position we find ourselves in, our decision now is to change the leadership and my full focus is on identifying and appointing the right person to, first and foremost, guide us out of this current situation, before then taking us forward. That process begins immediately.”

Chairman Pete Winkelman said: “It is with a real sadness that we have to make this decision. Liam and his team accomplished so much for us last season, providing some fantastic memories in a campaign we will never forget – for that we are all so grateful.”

The Club would like to thank Liam, Chris, David and Darren for their dedication and efforts during their time at Stadium MK. Everyone at MK Dons wishes them every success in the future.

Captain Dean Lewington will take interim care of the first-team and will prepare the squad for Tuesday’s Papa John’s Trophy tie with Bristol Rovers.

Meanwhile, Neil Critchley has been named as Queens Park Rangers’ new head coach, agreeing a three-and-a-half-year deal.

He most recently left Blackpool to become assistant manager at Aston Villa, leaving a day after boss Steven Gerrard was sacked in October.

Critchley comes in as successor to Michael Beale, who left QPR in late November after less than six months as boss to take charge of Scottish Premiership side Rangers.


NEIL Critchley has been appointed as QPR’s new head coach, agreeing a three-and-a-half-year deal at Loftus Road.

Critchley was most recently at Aston Villa as assistant head coach, which followed a successful two-year spell as manager of Blackpool.

During his time with the Tangerines, Critchley won promotion to the Championship in 2020/21 and successfully achieved safety in the second tier last term.

A highly-respected coach, Critchley demonstrated an early love of the tactical side of the game following retirement as a player at the age of 24, becoming academy director with boyhood club Crewe in 2007 before joining Liverpool’s set-up in 2013.

His success at Anfield at Under-18, Under-19 and Under-23 level led to his first foray into management at Bloomfield Road.

The 44-year-old is now looking forward to life in W12.

“I am very excited and can’t wait to get started,” Critchley said.

“It is a huge honour for me and I would like to thank the owners, Les Ferdinand and Lee Hoos for entrusting me to lead the club.

“I would also like to thank Paul Hall and his staff for the hard work they have put in during the interim period.

“Now I am looking forward to getting to work with the players and staff. I already know some of the players from working with them previously and I am aware of a number of them, having followed their careers from afar.

“There have been some good foundations laid here and now it is my job to work as hard as I can to build on that.

“We want to move the club forward and ensure we are competing at the top end of the Championship table.”

QPR chairman Amit Bhatia said: “We are absolutely delighted to bring Neil to the club.

“Following the abrupt departure of Mick Beale it was important that we made a swift appointment, but also that we took the necessary steps to ensure it was the correct appointment. In announcing Neil today, we have achieved that.

“We have made a good start to the season and, in the same way Mick built on the strong work of his predecessor Mark Warburton, we wanted somebody who we felt certain could continue that progress for the club.

“We also wanted to ensure we appointed someone who shares the footballing philosophy of our club, and in Neil and his team we also feel confident we have achieved that.

“I’m excited for Neil to get started immediately and wish him the best of luck.”

Critchley will be joined at Loftus Road by Mike Garrity, who leaves his role as assistant head coach at Lincoln City, and Ian Brunskill, who was previously Critchley’s assistant head coach at Blackpool.

This is what fans had to say as QPR confirm the appointment of their new head coach while MK Dons sack theirs…


@QPRTravels: Welcome Neil, all we ask for is passion and commitment.

@OllieBfc2003: Passion you’ll get but commitment…

@JoshHar54351658: Welcome to the club Neil. Please stay for the long term and not the short term 💙

@AthersBFC: Good luck with that 🐍

@QPRNINJA: Rumours that he’s left us and gone to Inverness Caledonian Thistle already.

@Brett33D: You’ve got a good number 2 there. !! Tbf good coach, great on paper, mid table confirmed, safe, leave you when stevie Gerrard rings for an assistant overnight

@ElTel98419113: Good luck Neil! A team bereft of confidence but plenty of talent there. Wishing you lots of luck.

@ChrisAllum1: Concerned how quick he ditched Blackpool to go to villa..

@andysmart79: He will promise the world , then leave when you least expect it. Sorry QPR you deserve better . Good luck .

@MikeJBurgess: Until Gerrard comes calling again.

@Opporchoonist: They knew we’d lose to Burnley and didn’t want his reign to start off badly. Right decision to be honest. Welcome Neil

@ConorBarry98: Happy with that. But has to be backed in January. Bit of luck we get archer or something

@Qprjem0808: Welcome Neil. Good luck. It’s gone a bit pear shaped last few weeks but it’s a great club. COYR’s.

@blaino1: Welcome on board Neil. Please don’t leave as soon as Stevie G gets a new gig.

@TomTaylor13: One snake with another. I still love the man dearly. I hope Mick Beale never splits up with his wife. Critch will be in his bed before he’s packed his suitcase

@tangerine_jord: Hahahaha Replace a rat with a rat.


@mark_l04: Thanks for some unbelievable moments last season but couldn’t correct mistakes even though it definitely started higher up the chain over the summer. Good luck Liam

@Joseph_1989_: Sad day as everyone liked LM. But we couldn’t wait till January and we gave him far more time than what most clubs would have. Wish him all the best

@Markdolling: Best wishes in your next role and future career Liam. A great guy who gave it his best shot but circumstances conspired against him this year. Had to make a change so all sadly inevitable.

@mattynipper: Think he has been let down badly by the board. Young manager who done wonders last season and still learning. Had to work with poor squad due to poor signing (Sweeney) and can’t expect miracles

@Tez030587: Right decision, might be a few weeks too late. Unfortunately a hell of a lot needs to change on and off the pitch. We must be sold and Winkleman must hand over stewardship to people who know how to run a football club. Huge potential with proper infrastructure/investment

@stephenf1373: Thanks Liam for great memories last season, it’s sad that the transfers for this season wasn’t up to standard.. Think you will learn a lot from this and be a top class manager

@dharvey4: He should have gone weeks ago.

@paul_winginit: Not entirely Liam’s fault. Bad recruitment in the summer he can’t be blamed for. Best of luck for the next job. He’s a decent coach dealt a very tough hand this season.

@george_tebbutt: Decent head coach let down by whatever Liam sweeting and Pete were up to over the summer.

@RockinaRobin: A club more dull than Reading.. I would suggest to move on the problems are not the managers making but that of Pete Winkleman not letting go of his pet project. To become a respected club it probably needs respected (and qualified) owners..

@matthew2215: Wish him the best, definitely the right decision but the mess we are in isn’t all on him, Winkelman and Sweeting have also let him down big time

@markwithamuk: Ha ha you have a manager and coaching team that get you 3rd. The franchise sells all the best players and expects the same results. The 10 franchise FC fans talking about replacements such as Liam Richardson, Sean Dyche. Absolute comedy value.

@WrennerBoolley: Not your manager that’s the problem. It’s your lack of a fanbase and appalling transfer record. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

@johnhalbitting: Sad to see, all of them were a huge support to me during their time at the club. The support, guidance and care they showed and shared in this time has been superb, and a real eye for development, people and football as a collective. I wish them all the very best for the future

@scfccarwyn: he’s better than russell martin tho 😭😭

@edward_w97: Possibly the hottest stuff in management six months ago. The brutal, results business that is football can change things really quickly…

@charliestez: The Cods 🤝 getting managers sacked

@QPRReport: The @MKDonsFC Manager #QPR supposedly were interested in the Summer, Liam Manning, is now available!

@reece_w99: In fucking credible. Probably the only game we’ve got in the rest of the season that I could see us winning and they’ve done that. Mo Eisa is about to stick his big black willy in our face and there’s not a single thing we can do about it.

@westerbuck: The current issues at the club are far deeper than just Liam Manning, but he has also presided over too many unacceptable performances this season, both tactically and in terms of intensity/mentality. Have to try something as under LM relegation looked guaranteed #mkdons

@Lauren_Sadlerx: And given Liam and co also gave us one of our favourite seasons ever, we owe it to him and ourselves to not let Winkie, Sweeting (plus the rest of the recruitment team) and Gibb to not get away with their combined shambles 👍🏻

@WAFCRob: One point off automatic promotion last season with some brilliant players and a good style of football. Staggering how much can go wrong when you don’t quite make it.

@jamesgrant37: Trust LS to bring in a manager who will suit the clubs current playing philosophy and recruitment model. Can’t fall into the trap of a ‘short term manager’ in the hope they’ll rescue us out of this mess (Will damage the club further in the long run). Luke Williams for me👍🏻

@JChamp27: Deserves another chance at league 1 level. Turned sour due to some things being out of his control. Good luck Liam

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

More in Championship