So Sunderland have abandoned their pursuit of Barnsley boss Paul Heckingbottom, and frankly no one else seems to want it. So will the Black Cats assess their options this weekend ahead of an in-house appointment to be confirmed next week?
It's all starting to a look a lot like an in-house appointment to steer Sunderland until the end of the season. Or at least so the consensus seems to be upon hearing Paul Heckingbottom will now definitely not be taking charge at the Stadium of Light.
Sky Sports broke the news that the Black Cats have ended their interest in appointing the Barnsley boss and with Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill ruling himself out yesterday, Sunderland now seem to have precious few realistic options to appoint to the vacancy which has existed for 17 days since Simon Grayson was dismissed.
Current caretaker Robbie Stockdale insisted in this afternoon's press conference that he hasn't been asked about extending his tenure but if he engineers a result against Millwall tomorrow, this appointment has something of an ominous feel to it now.
Supposedly there are obstacles which would have to be overcome for Ally McCoist to be able to take the job despite the apparent support he has from the Sunderland chief executive, and if those barriers are anything financial - which would mean the cash-strapped Black Cats having to fork out something significant or sort out something complex to appoint him - that prospect seems unlikely to float Ellis Short's boat.
That just leaves Chris Coleman as the stand-out candidate but seemingly the Wales boss has been locked in talks with his Welsh FA supremos today to thrash out improved terms to lead the national team in qualifying for Euro 2020. The former Fulham boss still heads the betting as at this evening but odds of John O'Shea taking charge of Sunderland seem to be slowly dropping as the sun sets on another day of speculation.
Money must have been lumped on Peter Reid taking charge throughout the day as the legendary Sunderland boss moves into the favourite-ranks. What price Reidy and O'Shea leading the survival charge to the end of the season with Stockdale installed as first team coach?
We've just got this feeling Reid will be in attendance at the Stadium of Light tomorrow. If the manager-less in-house coaching team can find a way to beat Millwall you just know O'Shea and Stockdale will be handed the opportunity to earn their stripes by keeping the Black Cats in the Championship. But will they be assisted by the man who revolutionised Sunderland at the turn of the millennium?