After picking up just five points from the opening ten games of the season, Bolton Wanderers decided to finally sack manager Dougie Freedman after almost two years in charge. The Scot leaves having won just 33.66% of his games in charge, leaving the Trotters rooted in the relegation zone.
Bolton are not long removed from their success in the Premier League, but the failures of Owen Coyle and Freedman mean that they are now in crisis - both on and off the pitch. Chairman Phil Gartside is also the subject of complaints from Wanderers fans, who want a change in direction for a club that's finances have been dwindling for years.
That means the job is hardly the most appealing right now, but a number of managers have already been linked, including Tony Mowbray, Malky Mackay and Bolton legend Mixu Paatelainen, but it's another former Wanderers hero who has been strongly suggested as Freedman's successor.
Phil Brown made over 300 appearances as a player for Bolton, but is more well known for being the man who took Hull City to the Premier League for the first time and singing on the pitch when he kept them in the top flight in 2009. Since then, Brown has been sacked by the Tigers, forced out of the role as Preston manager and rebuilt his career in League Two with Southend United, where he took the Shrimpers to the play-offs last season.
Now, with an opening at his former club, Brown has been strongly tipped to make an emotional return to Bolton - especially given that he served as Sam Allardyce's assistant boss during their most successful spell in recent history - but says he wants to finish what he started at Roots Hall.
"There is no truth in any Bolton rumours and I think they’ve just started because I was there for 15 years as a player, coach and manager," said Brown. "People keep asking me the question about whether or not I’m going there but it’s just speculation as far as I’m concerned. I’ve heard nothing at all and I’ve got a job to do at Southend United which I still very much want to finish."