Statistically, Jim Magilton is a worse Melbourne Victory coach than sacked predecessor Mehmet Durakovic.
So only the cult of personality the genial Northern Irishman brings and the promise of what he can build would win him the full-time job at the Victory, barring a huge form reversal from the A-League underachievers.
In his nine games in charge, Magilton has just one win, five draws and three defeats.
Durakovic's last nine games yielded two wins, three draws, four defeats and more A-League points than the Victory have managed since the club's board decided Magilton had a better chance of getting the club to the finals.
At the very least, that move looks a failure with the Victory virtually no chance of making the top six.
They need a big win at Sydney FC on Saturday night plus a disaster for either fifth-placed Melbourne Heart or sixth-placed Newcastle.
And even then, their miserable goal difference probably won't be enough if it comes down to tied points.
Magilton still covets the Victory job but is realistic enough to know that not winning games and not getting the Victory to the finals won't help his cause.
"Do I want the job? Yeah, I do, I do want the job," Magilton said on Friday.
"The record doesn't lie ... at the end of the day, I'm going to go about my business as I'm constantly trying to do.
"I'm trying to do, behind the scenes, what I think is right.
"My recommendations, whether they're taken on or not, will be to try and move the club forward as best as I can.
"If it doesn't transpire that it's me, then hopefully someone else can come in and say 'well there isn't an awful lot more he could have done other than obviously win a few games of football'."
Magilton said whichever way the Victory board decided to go in terms of a full-time coaching appointment, a player cleanout was necessary.
On Saturday the Victory will be without midfielder Carlos Hernandez after his send-off last week, the club's eighth red card this season.
Sydney FC, who had a tumultuous week with the acrimonious departure of chief executive Dirk Melton, welcome back striker Mark Bridge from injury.