El Tel snub highlights a serious situation at St James's Park
Terry Venables' snub to take the Newcastle United job on a short-term basis may not come as a surprise to many but if anything it shows just how much of a no-no the manager's hotseat has become at St James's Park.
With an uncertain future in the boardroom hovering above any incoming manager's head, many bosses will be wondering just whether it is worth the hassle to have their copy book blotted and spoil their coaching CV for the sake of a couple of games.
Venables may have an inconsistent track record with success and failure coming in equal measure throughout his career, but he's no mug and he knows that he could be out on his ear within weeks of taking the Toon job.
One other theory is that Venables was simply being courteous by talking to United and at the same time keeping his name in the frame.
In the last month alone, the Chronicle has spoken to El Tel about the situation and each time he refused to rule himself out of the job.
He did state to me on September 9 that the job would be a "great challenge" but didn't want to take the situation any further.
Now it leaves Newcastle without a manager and without a win in four matches with no leadership at boardroom level and no leadership in the dugout in sight.
Whatever the fans think, managers will take note of each other's actions and like in any profession word gets around.
And with Kevin Keegan walking out earlier this month and El Tel knocking it back, their stance will have been taken on board by other potential mamagerial candidates.
And until there is a sign of some stability and an end to the unrest on Tyneside, the uncertainty in the dugout will only continue.
That said don't rule out managers who are just as desperate to get back into the game.
But no matter who takes the job, the first thing they need to do is save United's Premier League status and it doesn't really get much more serious than that does it?