Less than 10 months after leading Leicester City to the most extraordinary title win in all of professional sport, Claudio Ranieri has been sacked by the club.
The initial reaction has been comprised of a mixture of anger and sadness, mostly the latter.
Less than a year ago, he and his team wowed and delighted the entire football world. Even neutrals were walking on air after Leicester's success.
It's worth casting your eyes back to that famous video posted when Leicester were on the cusp of the title in which the people of Leicester thanked Ranieri.
Now, he will have to make his home somewhere else. Even before the axe fell tonight, it was jarring to see him looking so haggard and relegation haunted this season.
The Leicester City vice-chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha had this to say in a statement.
This has been the most difficult decision we have had to make in nearly seven years since King Power took ownership of Leicester City. But we are duty-bound to put the club’s long-term interests above all sense of personal sentiment, no matter how strong that might be.
Claudio has brought outstanding qualities to his office. His skilful management, powers of motivation and measured approach have been reflective of the rich experience we always knew he would bring to Leicester City. His warmth, charm and charisma have helped transform perceptions of the Club and develop its profile on a global scale. We will forever be grateful to him for what he has helped us to achieve.
It was never our expectation that the extraordinary feats of last season should be replicated this season. Indeed, survival in the Premier League was our first and only target at the start of the campaign. But we are now faced with a fight to reach that objective and feel a change is necessary to maximise the opportunity presented by the final 13 games.
In their official statement announcing the statement, the club said that Ranieri's "status as the most successful Leicester City manager of all time is without question."
Tonight's announcement is a re-assertion of crushing reality. The reaction has been one of dismay with many neutrals now professing that Leicester get relegated.
England legend, Match of the Day presenter and professional Leicester fan Gary Lineker led the way.
After all that Claudio Ranieri has done for Leicester City, to sack him now is inexplicable, unforgivable and gut-wrenchingly sad.
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) February 23, 2017
Claudio Ranieri was Leicester manager for less time than Steve Kean was Blackburn manager.
— Richard Jolly (@RichJolly) February 23, 2017
Funny old game football. Can't help but feel sorry for Claudio Ranieri.
— Joseph Barton (@Joey7Barton) February 23, 2017
Managers who won the Premier League:
12 Mancini sacked
13 Fergie retired
14 Pellegrini replaced
15 Jose sacked
16 Ranieri sacked
— Callum Davis (@the_callumdavis) February 23, 2017
Ranieri sacked. I've been a miserable Leicester fan most of my adult life. He made me happy. Hope the council give him freedom of the city
— Nev Bann (@nevbann) February 23, 2017
This whole Ranieri thing reminds me of this book I read once called the Bible - guy in it performed miracles and he too got betrayed
— Leon McSweeney (@LeonMcSweeney) February 23, 2017
How utterly ridiculous this is ranieri turned average players into household names,, really hope it's not a case of player power
— Tommy Donohoe ☘️?? (@D40Tomo) February 23, 2017
Henry Winter gave us this interesting tidbit.
Some of the #lcfc players want Nigel Pearson back.
— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) February 23, 2017
The widely popular Claudio Ranieri fake account tweeted this out. The final word.
— Claudio Ranieri ? (@DonRanieri) February 23, 2017