Gus Poyet has committed his future to Sunderland even if he fails to beat the drop - provided the club still want him.
The Uruguayan only arrived in October and insists he would have "many excuses" from before he arrived should his side fall out of the Premier League this season, but he would be happy to take responsibility and rebuild should the worst happen. He told reporters:
I will hate it [if his side is relegated]. I will be devastated and it will probably be one of the worst holidays of my life, but that’s part of the job and the challenge. I will be here [next season] if they let me.
It is a problem if it becomes personal. If my team on the pitch doesn’t try the best, then I need to be honest and ask why I am here.
If I cannot even make a team fight against relegation, then you can think about it. If we do on Monday what we did against Liverpool then we have got a great chance so let’s not give me another excuse.
If we play the way that we played [against West Ham] then I won’t go. I can’t say what the gaffer [Ellis Short] is going to do. That is another situation.
Me? I am always committed and I don’t hide away from responsibility. If we go down I am going to be responsible. I am not going to say how much, but I will take my responsibility naturally.
For us supporters, there is always an inclination to play the blame game with managers. In pushing 30 years following the club, there has never been a manager with whom I have agreed even the majority of the time. I don't think there ever will be.
Has Poyet made mistakes? Definitely. Of course he has. All managers make them though. He inherited a situation with precious little margin for error and looks to be paying the price for that now.
But long-term readers of the site will know that I always implore a long term remit for managers. It's important to persist and give them enough time to build something that is theirs before they are judged. It's only fair. In the era of the transfer window, that's even more important.
So I hope Poyet is good to his word. He has had a tough month and there can be no questioning that, though I'm convinced that he has what it takes to build a good side here, no matter what division we find ourselves in come August.