Usually going into the Stadium of Light before home matches the talk is about the team selection and what system will we play.
But on Saturday the only topic of conversation was manager Dick Advocaat and whether he was leaving or not.
After the game in his press conference, his vague answers about his future spoke volumes so Sunday’s announcement that he would be leaving should have surprised nobody.
So, just 19 games since Gus Poyet was shown the door, Ellis short once again finds himself in the familiar position of looking for a new manager to stabilise a club that is again in turmoil.
Dick Advocaat will always be fondly remembered for keeping Sunderland up when all seemed lost and he may well be regretting not leaving then but what it means now is Sunderland are incredibly looking for their sixth boss in four seasons.
Redknapp, Pearson, Dyche and a string of other names have all been linked but for me, bookies favourite Sam Allardyce is the man we need.
At the end of the season, before Advocaat did his U-turn I was keen on Michael Laudrup, who did such a good job at Swansea but the circumstances have changed since the summer months and in Sunderland’s present situation we need a pragmatic manager who can organise, lead and most importantly get Sunderland out of the bottom three.
To do that, Sunderland need to keep clean sheets. We haven’t looked like getting one so far and we have the worst goals against record in the league.
Sunderland had nine goalless draws last season and while it might not be sexy football, clean sheets mean you are always in the game and it gives the team a foundation to work from.
I know Sam Allardyce isn’t everybody’s cup of tea but he knows how to set up teams with a game plan of being difficult to beat and it is difficult to imagine he couldn’t tighten Sunderland up at the back and improve the team defensively.
Sunderland are in deep trouble.
We are second off bottom and five points off safety but nobody gets relegated in October and we have been in these situations before and got out of them so it is a tough job yes, but with 30 games still to go, not an impossible one for the next manager through the door at the Stadium of Light, whoever that is.