Dundee United need to move quickly to replace Robbie Neilson and they could do worse than bringing in some old faces to steady the ship.
The speed of his departure for Hearts on Sunday night shocked everyone, myself included, but United can’t afford to dwell on it.
Going into the Premiership next season, hopefully, they need stable leadership and I wouldn’t rule my old bosses Craig Levein and Peter Houston out of the running.
I reckon they could be just what the club need.
No offence to American owner Mark Ogren or sporting director Tony Asghar but they don’t know Dundee United like Craig and Houstie do.
Ogren said it himself, they want people who are committed to the club and, from my experience of them, you couldn’t find two people more proud to be tangerine.
Beyond that, there’s the likes of Jon Daly and Sean Dillon, two young guys earning their stripes in coaching who could learn a lot from older heads, perhaps, one day taking on the top job themselves.
Ironically, and this latest Scottish football coronavirus episode is full of that quality, I would like to see a system similar to the one Craig, Robbie and Jon were once a part of at Tynecastle.
It’s probably something which should have been in place right from the start of Ogren’s reign but he has the chance to appoint his own man now.
Tommy Wright is another I’d be delighted to see rock up at Tannadice. He did an exemplary job at St Johnstone and I would have no concerns about the Terrors under his stewardship.
For now, the Tangerines will be licking their wounds, though, because this one will sting for a while.
The sub-plot of Hearts’ legal action against the SPFL, which could threaten United’s promotion to the Premiership, is bubbling under the surface. While the rapid exit of Robbie for his former club doesn’t sit right with me.
From a footballing perspective I can see how the move would make sense for Robbie and the Jambos – he’ll feel he has unfinished business there as a Hearts man.
However, I think the problems might run a little deeper than Robbie wanting to return to Gorgie.
It could work out well for United, getting compensation and a new manager, of course, but there will be a lot of questions to answer from confused fans and staff alike.
Just when it seemed things were settling down, United are back in disarray.
It is, of course, not a positive situation for them right now but Dundee need to be thankful for what they’ve got.
Last week’s statement from John Nelms will have sent shivers down the spines of Dark Blues scarred by two administrations since the turn of the century.
It’s clear the coronavirus is going to have a huge impact on the club’s finances, and they are not the only ones, but they have to look at what they have in place as a huge plus.
Boss James McPake has a playing squad which isn’t a million miles away from being ready, there is an insurance policy in place which could be a lifesaver and, most importantly, the Americans are clearly committed to staying put at Dens Park.
It was a realistic statement from Nelms but not a death knell or the end of his and owner Tim Keyes’ involvement with the Dee.
They may have to curtail some of their grand plans, like the stadium, and might not be able to give McPake a huge budget but the club is in the safest of hands.
I was bitterly disappointed with the Merseyside derby on Sunday.
The quality on display just wasn’t there and without the fans, rival clashes in
particular, don’t have the same edge or tempo.
The supporters make these games and watching such a massive game with fake fan noise in the background made for a strange atmosphere.
This isn’t football. The sooner we get bums back on seats the better!
I hope the financial impact of the coronavirus doesn’t lead to Dundee following Hibs in mothballing their academy.
For me, times like this are when clubs should be investing in their young players.