In fairness, it was always going to be the case as the run of bad results continued for Bristol City.
As it was it took the 2-0 loss at Reading for the Robins owners to bite the bullet and sack Dean Holden.
Bristol City statement and current situation
Tonight’s 2-0 defeat against Reading was the final straw. It was the Robins sixth loss on the spin and it was a loss that forced their hand.
City released an official statement on the club website – the text of which followed the usual modus operandi. Chief amongst its points was that current assistants Paul Simpson and Keith Downing would take charge of affairs for the foreseeable future.
They will inherit a side shot through of confidence and sitting in a disappointing 13th place in the table. They are an outfit looking more towards the bottom end of the table than the top.
Whilst Simpson and Downing are in immediate charge, a permanent manager will remain the priority.
Five early candidates for vacant Bristol City manager position
Paul Simpson and Keith Downing
It is not beyond the bounds of incredulity that Bristol City could opt to continue with the Simpson and Downing duo until the end of the season.
The pair have managerial experience between them. Simpson has seen spells in charge at Carlisle, Preston, Shrewsbury and Stockport as well and the England youth set-up.
Downing has had spells in charge of Cheltenham and West Brom and like Simpson has experience with the England youth set-up.
Harris has shown what he can do with a team when his back is up against the wall. He turned a Millwall team into an outfit to be feared by opponents.
He also helped put in place the foundations at Millwall that are now beginning to bloom at the New Den.
The combative Harris has been on the market since being sacked by Welsh side Cardiff City in late January.
Barton is as feisty and combative a manager as they come. It is a trait that he carried over into management from his days as a player.
That no-nonsense approach served the 38-year-old well in his first job in management with League One side Fleetwood Town.
He was at the Cod Army for three years and eight months, taking charge of 128 games for the north-west side.
42-year-old Cowley made his name in management with Lincoln City – managing the Imps for 176 games before moving on to Championship side Huddersfield Town.
Things didn’t turn out well for Cowley and his brother at the West Yorkshire side and they parted company in mid-July last year.
Despite it not turning out well at the John Smith’s Stadium for Cowley, he is highly respected as a coach.
Cook was a man of principle and he showed this with his actions towards Wigan staff when the first national lockdown occurred in March 2020.
His Wigan side were relegated after being placed in administration by their newly-arrived owner. It was final day heartache for Cook and the Latics.
He was at Wigan for three years two months, overseeing 155 games for the Lancashire outfit. Before that he had extensive management experience with Portsmouth and Chesterfield.