Alex Neil had come under the micrscope from supporters sitting in their armchairs and behind their laptops in the past few months. In truth performances hadn't been good since the start of 2020.
Preston were inconsistent for the first half of the season largely winning away but suffering at home. Results then turned in 2021 and Neil was under pressure as Preston lost a string of games.
There had been warning signs that all was not well at the club. Neil was clearly mystified by the lack of transfer activity in 2020 and this was combined with the poor management of players coming towards the end of their contracts.
For what it is worth I think Preston were looking to fudge matters to the summer. The loan and short term signings just papered over the long term cracks and a decision over the future direction of the club had to be taken in the summer in any event.
My suspicion was that the men in charge expected the team to amass enough points to stay up before taking a decision in the future over whether Neil would be handed further funds to develop a team for the next few seasons.
There have been names thrown around for the vacant manager's role but the big issue is the here and now. Frankie McAvoy has formally been given the reigns and he must use this international break to instill some confidence into the team.
Preston are realistically a few points short of safety with 50 usually the benchmark. Two wins will see them safe and whilst they have a tough run in they must draw confidence from the fact that they have taken points from Norwich and Brentford earlier in the season.
If Preston can maintain their Championship status then the bigger question of who is best placed to manage and move the club forward needs to be addressed. For the present time all concentration needs to be directed towards two more wins.