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It’s sixty days today since Sean Dyche was sacked on Good Friday, and on this sixtieth day we have confirmed that the new man at the helm is former Manchester City and Belgium central defender Vincent Kompany.

It’s taken some eight and a half weeks since the shock news of Dyche’s departure but for most of that time it has been apparent that Kompany was always the first choice and it has just become a matter of waiting until the news was confirmed. Last season, we were the only Premier League club who had never employed a non-British manager. That will be Bournemouth next season but we will be kicking off next season with a Belgian in charge and that shouldn’t go down too badly given the impact the last Belgian made at Burnley.

Since leaving the Etihad in the summer of 2019, Kompany has spent the last three years back at Anderlecht, where he started his career as a player. He took on the player/manager role for the first of those seasons, actually standing down at one point to concentrate on playing, with first Simon Davies and then Franky Vercauteren taking over, before hanging up his boots to become full time manager.

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Anderlecht were in eighth place in the 2019/20 season when it was cancelled due to the pandemic. They have since had two third place finishes in the regular seasons, losing just six of their 34 games in each season.

We don’t know too much about him as a manager here but you couldn’t fail to notice him as a player. He played for just three clubs, moving from Anderlecht to Hamburg before signing for Manchester City in 2008 and he’s best known to us after spending eleven years at the Etihad during which time he helped City to four Premier League titles, all of them as captain.

Those years included some appearances at Turf Moor. He scored City’s sixth and final goal in their 6-1 win against us in 2010. Five years later, it was Kompany who headed Kieran Trippier’s free kick to George Boyd from which Boyd struck the only goal of the game. Those two games were his first appearances against us. He twice more played at the Turf. The first of them was the 1-1 draw in the 2017/18 season and in the following season when they beat us 1-0 just four games from the end of his City career. His only game against us at the Etihad came earlier in that final season when only the totally incompetent Jon Moss will know why he wasn’t sent off in the very first minute of the game for a shocker of a challenge on Aaron Lennon. That was the first of our collection of 5-0 defeats on a day when Moss simply had a nightmare.

He returned to Anderlecht after leaving City, who have since erected a statue of him outside the Etihad Stadium, but now he’s returned to England and the north west of England where he will always have connections, Manchester being the birthplace of his wife Carla and their children.

A Belgian international with 89 caps, he had great pedigree as a player, and it’s a big welcome to him as we look to win an immediate return to the Premier League.

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