NINETY-NINE and a half days...
Not the number of days until Article 50 is invoked to formalise Brexit or the length of Ed Balls’ excessively long stay on Strictly Come Dancing either..
More the average tenure of the last four permanent Rotherham United managers, with the Millers now incredibly seeking their fifth new boss in 14 months following the shock resignation of Kenny Jackett.
Therein lies a bit of a story, you feel.
On this occasion, no heat from the boardroom, dreaded vote of confidence or metaphorical ‘tap on the shoulder’ from the chairman. Just a realisation from the 54-year-old that he’d had enough just five games into his Millers stewardship.
An assiduous manager, Jackett arrived with a tradesman’s reputation of being a re-builder of clubs after putting Swansea, Millwall and Wolves all back on an even keel, over time.
He looked exactly what the Millers needed on paper. Someone able to reconstruct the club from the bottom up, while possessing the requisite Championship savvy needed to get the first-team squad fit for purpose - in terms of organisation and resolve which they looked bereft of in the opening third of a sorry campaign.
If the worst came to the worst and the Millers went down, here was a figure able to rebuild the house again.
But just as quickly as Jackett arrived in South Yorkshire, he has upped sticks again after 39 days in charge, with little real clue as to why he elected to resign, with chairman Tony Stewart adamant that there had been no disagreement with the ex-Wolves manager.
One can only attempt to fill in the blanks. When asked if a victory over Leeds United in Saturday’s derby could prove a catalyst to the club’s season, Jackett - somewhat tellingly - spoke about the club needing to undertake significant improvements to their infrastructure and way of working behind the scenes to help instigate a true renaissance in their on-field fortunes.
Amid a wholesale revamping of the club to the high standards that Jackett sought, there was also the considerable pressure in the here and now to get results in a season which was not just listing, but stricken.YP football writer, Leon Wobschall.
Given what Jackett will have particularly been used to working with at his previous club Wolves at their expensively redeveloped Compton Park training base, the Millers’ Roundwood headquarters must have represented a bit of a culture shock.
Not too long after Jackett arrived in the Midlands, Wolves’ new £7m academy and arena opened, with the club having achieved Category One status back in 2012 following the introduction of the Premier League’s Elite Performance Plan (EPPP), aimed at improving the quality and quantity of homegrown players.
Those strong foundations enabled Jackett to successfully integrate a number of young players into the first-team ranks at Molineux and ultimately leave a lasting legacy.
It is fair to say that the Millers lag a long way behind Jackett’s former club in terms of day-to-day working facilities. A long way.
Jackett had also spoken last last week about bringing in a badly-needed head of recruitment to co-ordinate transfer activity, which he inferred had left a fair bit to be desired prior to his arrival. He spoke of a candidate being identified, but who was currently at another club.
Amid a wholesale revamping of the club to the high standards that Jackett sought, there was also the considerable pressure in the here and now to get results in a season which was not just listing, but stricken.
It was not just a big job, but a wholly monumental one which would have tested the very best.
To do a sound and lasting job, you require a full set of tools and the sudden exit of Jackett, an intelligent and streetwise ‘football man’, suggests he felt that he could not do that to the best of his ability at Rotherham.