Three impossible jobs in sport
Misbah-ul-Haq performs what is widely regarded as the toughest job in cricket -- captaining the Pakistan team, a unit described as being "predictably unpredictable" by South Africa coach Russell Domingo at the weekend.
Sydney: Misbah-ul-Haq performs what is widely regarded as the toughest job in cricket -- captaining the Pakistan team, a unit described as being "predictably unpredictable" by South Africa coach Russell Domingo at the weekend.
Here, AFP Sports looks at three other "impossible jobs" in the sporting world:
ENGLAND FOOTBALL MANAGER
- There have been 17 managers of the England football team since 1945 with the most successful being Alf Ramsey, who engineered the country`s only World Cup triumph in 1966.
Many have tried to emulate Ramsey and all have failed, with their shortcomings ruthlessly lampooned by the tabloid press.
"Swedes 2 Turnips 1", blasted The Sun after Graham Taylor`s team lost to the Scandinavians in 1992 followed by "That`s Yer Allotment" when the hapless coach quit.
Glenn Hoddle was criticised for his comments on disabled people as well as his working relationship with a faith healer while Sven Goran Eriksson`s enthusiastic performances in the bedroom, rather than his dugout skills, also attracted similar derision.
But current coach Roy Hodgson won widespread sympathy when The Sun mocked his slight lisp with the headline: "Bwing on the Euwos!"
One Twitter post read: "Roy Hodgson can speak five languages. The Sun can barely write in one."
BRAZIL FOOTBALL MANAGER
- Things are just as tough in Brazil -- and they have won the World Cup four more times than England.
Since the 1920s, there have been 54 changes of management at the Selecao, with some coaches even recalled to the hotseat.
Present incumbent Dunga is a similar returnee -- the 12th coach to have had more than one opportunity.
The former national captain managed Brazil from 2006-2010 and was brought back after Luiz Felipe Scolari resigned following the humiliation of the 2014 World Cup campaign on home soil where Brazil were routed 7-1 by Germany in the semi-finals.
"It was the worst day of my life," said Scolari, who had already been in charge before but in more successful circumstances, guiding the team to the 2002 world title.
Dunga is seen as far too pragmatic for style-loving Brazilian fans.
"Accepting Dunga shows that even leftovers look like a banquet when you`re starving," wrote ESPN columnist Mauro Cezar.
CHICAGO CUBS MANAGER
- The Major League Baseball team, known affectionately as "The Loveable Losers", are suffering the longest title drought in the history of American professional sports -- 106 years and counting.
Having won back-to-back World Series in 1907 and 1908, they last made the Fall Classic in 1945, but since then it`s been one long tale of misery and near-misses.
And the reason? "The Curse of the Billy Goat", apparently, which has been widely blamed for the drought after a Cubs fan and his pet goat were thrown out of the stadium during that 1945 tournament.
"The Cubs, they ain`t gonnna win no more," predicted goat owner Billy Sianis as he was manhandled out of the arena (with his goat at his side) -- and he has been right, so far.