Sunderland are on the verge of unveiling Derek McInnes as the club’s new manager.
An extraordinary board meeting has been called at Aberdeen today where the Dons' directors have been asked to ratify a negotiated compensation fee for their manager whilst the 45-year-old has entered formal discussions to agree terms with the Black Cats.
McInnes is due on Wearside shortly - if he's not arrived already - to conclude talks with the Sunderland hierarchy.
After seemingly trawling through the names of every manager with some semblance of second-tier experience, Sunderland have returned to the point at which they started this manager hunt and will seek to appoint McInnes within the next couple of days.
McInnes emerged early on as a front-runner for the vacancy at the Stadium of Light. The Pitodrie boss has been on an extended holiday and returned within the last few days, set to enter formal negotiations with Sunderland top-brass.
McInnes is said to have initially met with Walter Smith - who has been advising Sunderland chief executive Martin Bain - at the end of May. Since then, various names have emerged as 'favourites' only to slip away again in the betting markets. The Aberdeen boss appears to have been the preferred candidate during the Black Cats' detailed hunt for a new man.
David Moyes resigned over three weeks ago and since then Sunderland have gone through a protracted recruitment process to find his replacement with CV's requested, informal sounding-out discussions and a short-list said to have included Ryan Giggs, Paul Lambert, Simon Grayson and Nigel Pearson.
The stumbling block for McInnes has always thought to have been the availability - or lack of - funds to rebuild the Sunderland squad which will be unrecognisable come August from the one which finished the season last month.
Coupled with that, the Paisley-born former midfielder is thought to have been keen to ensure his initial deal at the Stadium of Light contains some form of written assurance over his position at the club and his access to funds.
Right now, relative to the other candidates bandied around, McInnes appears to be the best man for the job. His achievements up in Scotland in revitalising Aberdeen based on a strong worth-ethic and getting the best out of players will see him land at the Stadium of Light with much promise.
But for this appointment - probably the most important in a decade - Sunderland AFC need to play their part in this process and back their man with a reasonable transfer budget and to enable him to bring in his own team to work alongside him.
The appointment should be ratified within 48 hours and it's thought McInnes is due on Wearside today to negotiate the final details of his deal.