Gus Poyet has been unsurprisingly shown the door at Sunderland after an abysmal run of games resulted in only one win in 2015. The Black Cats are flirting with the relegation zone and find themselves fourth bottom and one point adrift of fellow relegation battlers Burnley.
Uruguayan Poyet hasn't exactly had a consistent career at Sunderland as he guided them to an unbelievable relegation recovery last season coupled with an unexpected League Cup runners-up medal, halted only by champions Man City.
However ongoing tensions with the board at the Stadium of Light boiled over after a string of bad results, including an early FA Cup exit at the hands of surprise package Bradford and most recently a 4-0 romping at the hands of Aston Villa on Saturday led to the decision on Monday being made that Poyet's reign had come to an end.
Fans showed discontent as the stadium began to empty at half time following Saturdays embarrassing defeat to fellow strugglers Aston Villa.
Villa have been given a new lease on life and hope to climb their way out of the dog fight at the foot of the table following the appointment of super-interim, Tim Sherwood. After Poyet's disappointing form, it appears that Sunderland's board, in particular chairman Ellis Short is keen to follow the actions at Villa Park.
In a statement given on the clubs website, chairman Short was quoted saying: "I would like to thank Gus for his endeavours during his time at the club, in particular last season’s ‘great escape’ and cup final appearance, which will live long in the memory of every Sunderland fan."
Short in the past has been criticised for his rash and somewhat impulsive actions, after Paolo di Canio who in the past has openly criticised his former chairman, was sent packing last season in similar circumstances only to find his replacement (after caretaker boss Kevin Ball) Poyet meeting the same fate under a year and a half later.
He went on to say: "Sadly, we have not made the progress that any of us had hoped for this season and we find ourselves battling, once again, at the wrong end of the table. We have therefore made the difficult decision that a change is needed."
Have Sunderland acted too soon?
Some would say that Short and the Sunderland officials perhaps acted too soon, as Poyet masterminded a relegation miracle last year, beating the drop with six games left in the season, and the side's fate appearing sealed as they sat at the foot of the table.
However others would say the decision came too late, as the season enters its climax a replacement shouldn't be rushed and needs to be carefully appointed.
Little time and arguably little respect has been shown by the Sunderland board in the wake of the leagues fourth sacking of the season as the hunt for Poyets replacement begins.
Advocaat set to replace Poyet?
High on the list for the Black Cats board is ex-Rangers manager Dick Advocaat who is in the limelight again since leaving the Serbian National team, albeit he is seen as a short term solution.
However West Ham manager Sam Allardyce is also in the frame for the position although a spirited West Ham side and a impressive season would almost immediately rule out the ex-Bolton manager as he will surely be looking to build on a possible Europa League place.
With haste the board at the Wearside club are looking to fill the position, as even a quick fix solution to the end of the season may do the job as long as The Black Cats avoid the dreaded drop.
Although Poyet's dismissal is of little surprise based on current form, the timing may be a little close to the end of the season.
And with chairman Ellis Short's reputation of little patience and rocky relationships, it's a big ask that a short term solution can give Sunderland the confidence and motivation to keep them up.
Ironically, the club will be looking for someone to replicate the results of Poyet's relegation triumph last year as the Black Cats continuously look over their shoulder at the drop zone.
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