Aston Villa have appointed Dean Smith as their new manager.
But he was not the only target they had in mind. The Villans were rejected by Rui Faria and Thierry Henry before opting for Smith.
Faria and Henry’s rejections would have hurt Aston Villa. But this was a blessing in disguise.
Rather than taking a punt on either of those, Aston Villa have the best man for the job in Smith.
Smith is a boyhood Aston Villa fan. But more importantly than that, he has all the credentials to succeed.
The 47-year-old is still a relatively young manager but he has experience in the Championship with Brentford.
He has worked wonders in West London on a relatively small budget compared to what he will have at Aston Villa.
And the brand of football he plays is bound to excite the fans. It is expansive and pleasing on the eye.
What Aston Villa might have got with the other two managers is a mystery.
Henry was an extraordinary player and his reputation is huge but he has no experience of managing a club.
Faria has great links within the game and has learned from Jose Mourinho but he has never been the head coach.
Both appointments could have spectacularly backfired and Aston Villa are not in a position to take risks.
There is no set blueprint to winning promotion from the Championship. But Smith gives the Villans the best possible chance of going up.