As we head into November the Premier League table begins to take shape and sides can start to map out what may lie ahead for the remainder of the campaign.
Those at the top will be looking for European qualification and possibly better, while those near the bottom will be hoping to stave off early fears of a relegation battle. The clubs who feel that they need to improve may go as far as changing managers in an attempt to improve their form.
Sunderland and Crystal Palace have already taken this step this season, disposing of Paolo Di Canio and Ian Holloway respectively in the hope of turning round their fortunes.
Here, we take a look at the men who could become the third Premier League boss to lose their job.
Fulham manager Martin Jol is currently the favourite to be sacked next, after the Cottagers’ inconsistent start to the campaign took another bad turn this week.
Following Saturday’s comprehensive defeat to Southampton, Fulham suffered an embarrassing Capital One Cup exit to Championship side Leicester City at the King Power Stadium in midweek, with Jol’s cavalier style of football proving to be his side’s own downfall.
Jol’s odds on leaving Craven Cottage were shortened immediately after the 4-3 defeat, although it seems he will be charge for Saturday’s match against Manchester United.
The West London club is under new ownership, having been purchased by American businessman Shahid Khan during the summer, and if the club continue to hover above the bottom three he may be forced into disposing of the former Tottenham Hotspur boss.
Speculation has been mounting over the future of Chris Hughton as Norwich City manager in recent weeks after the club’s struggles in the Premier League.
The Canaries currently sit in the relegation zone, having won two, drawn two and lost five of their nine league fixtures so far this campaign. Since their last win at the end of September, they have failed to win a match in October and were knocked out of the League Cup by Manchester United on Tuesday.
Hughton is a likeable man and did a fine job during his first campaign as Norwich boss last season, keeping the club in the Premier League following Paul Lambert’s departure to join Aston Villa.
However if results do not improve, he could find himself out of work soon.
Alan Pardew’s odds on leaving Newcastle United have dropped significantly since Sunday’s defeat to Sunderland in the Tyne-Wear derby, which was the club’s fourth loss of the season.
Pardew is the second-longest serving manager in the Premier League behind Arsene Wenger, having joined Newcastle in December 2010.
The Magpies have won just six of their last 18 matches, which would be arguably sackable form at other clubs in the division.
Since the 2011-12 campaign, you could argue that Newcastle have only gone backwards under the former Reading and Southampton boss.
The fifth place finish that Pardew delivered that season was a remarkable feat, and one that earned him the Premier League manager of the season award. However the club have been on the slide in the last 17 months and if things do not improve on the pitch, his time at St James’ Park may come to an end soon.
Malky Mackay has done an excellent job at Cardiff City, leading the club into the top flight for the first time in over 50 years last season, but his relationship with the club’s hierarchy has reportedly been strained by recent events.
Owner Vincent Tan decided to suspend head of recruitment Ian Moody, a close ally of Mackay, and replace him with 23-year-old Kazakh Alisher Apsalyamov, who is a friend of Tan’s son.
Mackay, who was angered by the treatment of Moody, has stated that he has no intention to resign from his position, but there has been no clear signs made by the powers that be at Cardiff that the 41-year-old will remain in his job.
The Welsh club currently sit one point outside the relegation zone and Mackay will have to deliver some impressive results on the pitch to move the side up the table, otherwise the Scot could become the next man to leave the Cardiff City Stadium.
It is strange to be talking about a Manchester United manager being under pressure of the sack so early into a season, but following the club’s slow start to the campaign, questions are already being asked over whether David Moyes was the right man to replace Sir Alex Ferguson.
United sit eighth in the Premier League, having lost three times already this season, the most recent being an embarrassing home reversal to West Bromwich Albion at the end of September.
The club have improved in October, going the whole month unbeaten, but unconvincing performances in the draw against Southampton and late victory over Stoke City have done little to silence the doubters.
Tuesday night’s 4-0 success over Norwich City in the League Cup suggests that the team are close to rediscovering their best form and Moyes is expected to be given more time in the job, in the hope that results in the league improve.