Leeds United midfielder Eunan O'Kane shows support to under-fire boss Thomas Christiansen
Six seasons have been and gone since the man in the home dugout at Elland Road on the opening day was still there come the traditional lap of honour in late April or early May.
It is a damning statistic, as is the fact Leeds are on their ninth manager since Simon Grayson, the last to complete a full campaign, left in February, 2012.
Thomas Christiansen is the latest incumbent to feel the heat, a run of six defeats in eight league outings having left many wondering if another reverse at Brentford today might bring about a change at the helm.
Eunan O’Kane hopes that is not the case, the midfielder pointing to the success that former club Bournemouth have had by sticking with Eddie Howe for the past five years.
“Everyone here and everyone connected with Leeds knows what happens when managers turnover really quickly or when owners change,” said the midfielder.
“It is about long-term projects and you have to buy into that. You have to give them time. There were periods at Bournemouth, and it might have been the season when we got promoted from the Championship, where we didn’t win for six or seven games after Christmas.
“It took us until the last day to win the league, but Bournemouth were comfortable about getting promoted. It was never in question inside the dressing room.
“Sometimes things don’t go your way, sometimes decisions go against you. But if we can continue with the process and the project here, we can be successful.”
O’Kane admits the recent slump in form has been tough, but he is also keen to stress that United still sit seventh in the Championship table.
He said: “You do feel a bit like, ‘What do we have to do to win a game of football?’ The slight difference between then (at Bournemouth) and now was that we took a couple of bad beatings.
“I remember playing Swindon away and we lost 5-0. We haven’t had that here.
“Sheffield Wednesday is the biggest one we’ve had, but, otherwise, we have probably had enough chances to win most of the games we have played in, bar one or two.
“In the first however many games, they were going in. Now they seem to be going wide or hitting the post and coming back out.
“Sometimes that is football. You just have to get on with it.”