Roberto Mancini has been 'dead man walking' for the past three weeks at Manchester City and the inevitable sacking occurred shortly before midnight on Monday.
Failure to attain any of the stated goals was the reason given by the City hierarchy for his dismissal, which given the resources that the Italian had at his disposal, seems like a legitimate cause however its never as cut and dried as you think.
In his three plus years at the Etihad after taking over from the previous incumbent, Mark Hughes, who was also sacked for failure to attain stated goals, Mancini had at least ended the trophy drought.
1976 was the date that lived long in the minds of long suffering City supporters and the memory of Dennis Tueart has become almost black and white. That all changed when Mancini led the team to the FA Cup final in 2011 and then the Holy Grail of Premier League title last year.
Patience is not a virtue at the top level anymore and Mancini ultimately paid the price of not being able to manage his players. Carlos Tevez and Mario Balotelli immediately come to mind and the City playing squad always seemed on the verge of a blow out.
Mancini has proven to be a winner and he'll be hired again although I'd be surprised if an English club came in for his services. The Italian is a realist and while probably disappointed with the manner of his sacking, knew it was coming as the constant speculation about his Job mounted.
Personally I'll miss Mancini as he was a gentlemen and passionate about his football, while his last minute celebration of THAT goal by Sergio Aguero will always be one of my favourite managerial moments.
With Manuel Pelligrini waiting in the wings, the soon to be ex-Malaga coach will have big boots to fill especially as his club record is nothing to write home about in terms of trophies.