Here we are again.
Aitor Karanka’s departure has been confirmed on Nottingham Forest’s official website, leaving the Reds in an all too familiar position.
The Spaniard may have jumped as much as he was pushed, but there was a sense of inevitability as to how another unfortunate saga would end.
No smoke without fire and all that.
Ever since murmurings of discontent first surfaced, you got the feeling that there was only going to be one outcome.
Death, taxes and managerial change at the City Ground – the only certainties in life.
Over the course of the last 10 years or so, going back to Christmas 2008, 15 different bosses have filled the Forest hot-seat.
Within that, there have been 13 permanent appointments – with Billy Davies taking the role on two occasions.
Simon Ireland is now set to join Rob Kelly, Paul Williams and Gary Brazil on the list of caretakers this weekend against Reading.
That is a stunning amount of turnover and upheaval.
And to put things further into perspective, Leeds United – another of those partial to ripping things up and starting again – have only had 13 different men at the helm over the same period of time.
Those individuals have all held a full-time role at one point or another, but Forest are about to top them by taking their haul to 14.
The Whites became a laughing stock under Massimo Cellino, making four changes before the turn of the year in 2014.
What have Forest become?
Fawaz Al Hasawi appeared to have taken a leaf out of the book of a former Elland Road supremo during his time at the helm, but a fresh approach was supposed to be ushered in as he was waved off.
As the man putting his money where his mouth is, Evangelos Marinakis will argue that he has every right to do what he wants.
And he does.
Karanka’s record of 16 wins from 52 games hardly gave him the strongest of cases in an argument against the axe, but was he ever going to be given time?
Contracts in modern football are not worth the paper they are printed on and many of those entering into said agreements are aware of that fact.
Particularly when walking through the doors at the City Ground.
There has to become a point, though, when the merry-go-round breaks down and a revolving door is slammed shut.
It is all well and good having long-term goals, but nothing will ever be achieved if that is driven by short-term vision.
Forest have now ticked just about every managerial box out there.
Promising reputation (O’Driscoll, Cotterill, Warburton), so-called ‘name’ (McClaren, McLeish), former players (Pearce, Freedman), proven abroad (Montanier), proven here (Davies, Karanka).
What is left?
Another new dawn may beckon, but old ground is going to have to be trodden.
Of those apparently in the frame, many slip seamlessly in the categories mentioned above.
Martin O’Neill, Nigel Clough, Roy Keane (former players), Slavisa Jokanovic (proven here), David Moyes, Sam Allardyce (so-called ‘names’), Leonardo Jardim (proven abroad).
We have been down those paths before and continue to go around in circles.
The grass is forever greener on the other side.
Just one more change and we’ll definitely get it right.
What could possibly go wrong?
Maybe Marinakis and Co will get it right this time – the law of averages suggests that the Reds will have to stumble across a winning formula at some point.
The ‘throw enough mud at the wall and some will stick’ approach is, however, wearing thin.
Karanka is gone, there is nothing we can do about that, so let’s move on.
Something can, however, be done about ensuring that we do not find ourselves back in this position in a matter of months – with those supposedly steering the ship having to take the lead.