Sunderland are weighing up their options and considering a potential replacement for their head coach Dick Advocaat, according to the Daily Mirror, which reports that Patrick Vieira is on their shortlist, if the Dutchman were to leave the Stadium of Light.
If this were to happen then the way the playing side of the club operates would need to be under serious review. In fact, bringing in someone whose managerial record is limited to under-21 football, and has yet to have the taste of managing at Premier League level would be a massive gamble.
But there is logic in backing a huge figure from within the game who is something of a young rookie when it comes to management and nurturing them, but the club should look at several things from their transfer dealings, the impact that constraints from up above can have on the field to bringing in players through at youth level. A potential Vieira appointment would be an opportunity to signal a change in approach.
One only has to look at the past few seasons when Sunderland seem to get into relegation trouble, sack their manager, survive and then it repeats itself. The Black Cats need to find a way to break that cycle positively as they do not want to lose their Premier League status this season, and they are in danger of just that after a start that has seen them pick up just two points from their opening seven games.
When it comes to managerial appointments, it seems they have been looking for a quick fix in order to preserve their status, rather than trying to find a way to be in rude health for the medium to long term. They simply can't continue an approach of changing their head coach every season given the lack of stability and huge player turnover that can come with it.
To think that if Advocaat were to resign and be sacked, to be followed by a different person that it would all turn out for the better then they are kidding themselves. There is clearly something wrong given that several different individuals of differing managerial backgrounds and experience have all seemed to struggle in this way in recent years, and those at the top of the club need to sort it out.