Former Manchester City manager Brian Horton was shocked by the timing of the announcement of Roberto Mancini's sacking but understands why the club took the decision.
Mancini's departure was finally confirmed on Monday night, with Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini favourite to take over at the Etihad.
Horton lost his job at City in 1995 following disappointing Premier League finishes and he had some sympathy for the Italian.
"It's a shock with what he has achieved - to win the cup and then the league, then second in the league and FA Cup - most clubs would take that," he told Sky Sports News.
"But having said that, with the money he has had and the owners, second best is not good enough. It is a bit of a shock but I can understand it.
"To do what they did in the Champions League two years on the spin - they were very hard groups but they should have been beating the likes of Ajax - they have looked at the whole picture.
"To finish second in the league and get the sack is quite brutal, but that is what it is like in management now, and not just in the Premier League."
Jose Mourinho looks destined to leave Real Madrid in the summer and, although he has been heavily linked with a return to Chelsea, Horton admitted he would love to see him in charge of City.
"I think people would love Mourinho to come here," he added.
"I think he is the name on everybody's lips. What a 'wow' factor for Manchester, with David Moyes taking over at United and someone like Mourinho taking over here - he'd blow it apart."