So Sam Allardyce has told Crystal Palace he intends quitting as their manager. Media reports claim Big Sam had insisted on certain assurances from Selhurst Park chairman Steve Parish before committing his future to the club.
Having seemingly received none of them, Allardyce is even supposed to have cleared his desk and prepared for a swift departure from South London.
And in doing so, the man who is so warmly thought of on Wearside has set red-and-white hearts a flutter.
You couldn't make it up could you? And the natural reaction in the North East is to ponder for a second - however fleeting - that Allardyce might yet return to the Stadium of Light with his way to a triumphant Sunderland 'homecoming' cleared by David Moyes' exit just yesterday.
Perhaps at last the hand of destiny which has cruelly smacked the arse of Sunderland so many times in recent years, may yet wave a little magic over the Stadium of Light and return Allardyce to finish the job he started up here.
But his departure from Selhurst Park - with a similar cause but with such a desperately stark contrast to David Moyes flee from the Stadium of Light - sure sums up the futile fate of being a Sunderland supporter.
Whilst Big Sam looks set to depart Palace having kept them in the Premier League, his successor at Sunderland, David Moyes, has exited having overseen a relegation. Yet both men look set to have quit after demanding transfer funds from their employer.
Dreams of mid-table mediocrity on Wearside, based on Allardyce's nine month tenure at Sunderland, were dashed when Roy Hodgson - today linked with the Black Cats' vacant post - failed so miserably at Euro 2016 and the FA took a punt on Big Sam as his replacement.
After his infamous faux pas in being stung by undercover journalists cost him his job at England, Allardyce was never really likely to return to Sunderland. But it really was a whack in the chops for Black Cats' fans.
When England sacked Allardyce, David Moyes was still going through a period of 'give him time' grace at the Stadium of Light. And only after Big Sam departed did the reality of the huge issues at Ellis Short's club become apparent to observers and supporters on Wearside.
Before Allardyce departed for England, Sunderland transfer talk was filled with glorious names. Names who would be lured to the Stadium of Light with the prospect of turning out for the revitalised Black Cats who would at last establish themselves as a 'proper' Premier League club after years of floating around the bottom three.
Edin Dzeko had us salivating as one such prospect and we wondered whether Diafra Sahko or Andre Ayew might fulfil their fate as Big Sam 'stars' and head north for Sunderland.
In the end, once the financial picture became starkly laid bare at Sunderland after Allardyce had left, that harsh reality coupled with David Moyes' unique blend of realism, smashed away those hazy summer dreams of Premier League stability.
Perhaps Big Sam will ride into town once again and lead us on a merry stroll up the Championship. But the truth is, the next man won't be given a pot to piss in and Allardyce will have far more tempting offers than Sunderland. Southampton or Watford might appeal to him next.
Though what if that eagerly awaited new owner has finally wrestled the club off Ellis Short and is about to ride into town with a suitcase filled with cash and Big Sam in the boot?
But linger further in the dream for a moment and tonight cross your fingers and utter a little prayer that fate will deliver us Allardyce and that David Moyes will emerge as the next man to take charge at Crystal Palace. According to Sky Bet, he's a 20/1 shot at taking over at Selhurst Park.
Because that really would be the ultimate comeuppance for one man who fled Sunderland with such contempt a mere four months ago. A man who scarpered with a scathing attack on his former manager at the Stadium of Light which was probably a convenient cover for his own misdemeanours and failings.
Patrick, I'd like you to meet our new manager - David.
How we would laugh.