So it's official.
Bolton Wanderers' assistant manager Johan Mjällby is to leave the club for family reasons, with a new no.2 to be announced on Monday.
Manager Neil Lennon confirmed as much in his post-match interview following yesterday's splendid 2-1 home win over those twats from Wolverhampton:
So who could replace the Swede as assistant to our Lenny?
I thought I would consult my crystal nutsack and put a few names forward:
1) Garry Parker
The present first-team coach at Wanderers, the former Aston Villa midfielder has been a long-time associate of Neil Lennon, and would represent continuity in the ranks as well as being an experienced coach who seems to be respected by the lads in the team.
Likelihood - odds on
2) Alan Thompson
Another ex-Celtic teammate and former member of Neil Lennon's backroom staff at Parkhead, the former Wanderer has knowledge of the club and a reasonable coaching pedigree himself. A widely-publicised fall-out between the manager and Tomo probably precludes him from taking over from Mr Mjällby.
Likelihood - unlikely
3) Mike Phelan
Nailed on for the role, according to a bloke who sits to the side of me at the Reebok. The former Manchester United assistant manager has a wonderful coaching CV, and holds a similar role at Hull City at the moment under Steve Bruce. Whether he could be tempted back to the North West is currently unknown but he would represent a bit of a coup for Lennon and for Bolton Wanderers.
Likelihood - would be nice.....but...
4) Kevin Davies
A veteran of over 400 games for the club, SKD has recently retired from the game and is believed to be studying for his coaching badges. He knows the club inside out, and would command the respect of the playing staff given his reputation. I reckon he would crawl over broken glass to take up the role.
Likelihood - has a great chance
5) Mark Venus
A long-time associate of former Celtic boss Tony Mowbray, the former Ipswich Town assistant manager is currently technical director at Coventry City and would no doubt consider a move to Bolton as being a step up from his present role.
Likelihood - outside chance
6) Francis Smerecki
Allow me this one - he's a 66 year old Frenchman of Polish descent, and I always sign him as my assistant on Football Manager. For the last decade he's been in charge of the French football academies and would be ace, because he's ace on a computer game. Seriously.
Likelihood - not a cat in hell's chance