Sacked Aston Villa manager Roberto di Matteo says he is “deeply disappointed” not to be given enough time by the struggling Championship club.
The Italian, 46, was sacked on Monday after only 124 days in charge.
Speaking for the first time since, he said: “My coaching staff and I have worked tirelessly to rebuild the squad.
“I have seen enough over the opening games of the season to suggest that the team we built will start converting draws into wins and climb the table.”
Villa are sixth from bottom, having won only one of their opening 11 league games.
In a statement issued via the League Managers Association, Di Matteo added: “I fully expect the players we have brought in to start delivering results in the weeks and months to come.
“I am sure that the work we have done over the past four months will contribute to seeing Villa back in the Premier League in the near future.”
‘They’ve got to give the guy time’
Whoever succeeds Di Matteo will be Villa’s fifth man to pick Villa’s team in 12 months.
Former Villa left-back Alan Wright, 45, who played under only three managers in eight and a half years at the club, says whoever is appointed needs time.
Tim Sherwood spent 250 days in charge, Remi Garde 148 and caretaker boss Eric Black 65 before Di Matteo’s appointment.
Wright told BBC WM: “It needs to be the right fit, but then we’ve said that of the last three or four managers.
“They’ve just got to give the guy time. It needs some sort of philosophy at the club. We’ve had too many managers coming in with their own philosophy.
“To get any sort of continuity, the manager needs a bit of time first and foremost. Then, with the philosophy in place, bring in the manager that suits the philosophy.
“Then nothing else changes. You get an idea of what’s expected of you, rather than six months on another new manager, they change things and try to start from afresh.
“With all due respect to the club, they’ve possibly been a bit trigger happy this time. But we all know it’s a results-based industry and he just hasn’t got the results, so I’m not too surprised.”
Villa’s managerial success rates since 1994
Who will get the Villa job?
The latest contender reportedly linked with the Villa job is much-travelled former Cheltenham Town, Stoke City, Burnley. Notts County, Portsmouth, Nottingham Forest and Bristol City manager Steve Cotterill, who is currently topping the bookmakers’ odds as favourite to replace Tony Mowbray at League One neighbours Coventry City.
But Wright believes it will come down to a choice between former Birmingham, Sunderland and Hull boss Steve Bruce, Huddersfield Town manager David Wagner, or Tim Sherwood, sacked by Villa a year ago after only eight months in charge.
“Villa need some sort of name. Steve Bruce fits that bill,” said Wright.
“I’m pretty sure Villa aren’t going to go up this season unless they go on some sort of amazing run but he is someone who knows how to get out of the Championship, having done it four times. He’d be the obvious one.
“But I also believe Tim has shown interest in the job again, which tells me that he probably feels his job was not finished there.
“He wasn’t given the chance to be allowed to bring in the players he wanted. They were sort of thrown at him and he was told to work with them. And the fans liked him. He was honest.
“David Wagner is fresh to the English game and has done outstandingly well.
“It’s probably going to be one of those three and, if I was a gambling man, which I’m not, I’d go with Steve Bruce.”
Alan Wright was talking to BBC WM’s Adrian Goldberg.