Wolves have launched their search to find a replacement for sacked manager Mick McCarthy and have not ruled out an interim replacement until the end of the season.
McCarthy's five-and-a-half year reign at Molineux was ended this morning by chief executive Jez Moxey in a training-ground meeting, with Wolves having slid into the bottom three of the Barclays Premier League.
Yesterday's 5-1 home hammering by local rivals West Brom was the final straw.
But Wolves' previous alarming sequence of results since early-season optimism faded - just 14 points from the previous possible 66 - was the over-riding concern for club owner Steve Morgan and Moxey.
Morgan told Sky Sports News: "I'm afraid the board thought we had little or no choice.
"Mick and I have had several conversations in recent weeks. Mick's a good guy and the decision was taken extremely regretfully but results have not been good enough this season.
"Wolves has historically been one of the great clubs in English football. Hanging around the bottom few places and relegation is not what this club is about.
"We need to pick ourselves up and be aiming up the league and hopefully that's what the new man will take us forward with. We have ambitions and fighting relegation is not one of those ambitions.
"It came with a heavy heart because everybody likes Mick and he's been a great servant to the club, and we wish him all the best."
Moxey, who hopes to bring in a new manager before Wolves' next game at Newcastle on February 25, agreed: "We felt we had to act now. We had to get a new manager in to try and halt the decline in results.
"We felt if we had carried on the way we were we would certainly have got relegated. The trend was only going one way.
"Is an interim appointment a possibility? Yes, that is an option for us, we are not ruling anything out."
Moxey made it clear the new manager has to adjust to the workings of the midlands club.
He said: "The person who joins us has got to understand what club he is joining. He needs to understand us.
"We are not the sort of club who has a manager we are working for. The manager has to work for the football club, has to understand how the club works.
"We are a very good club, financially in a good place, stable, got a good stadium, a brilliant training ground.
"But this is not a situation where a manager will come in with an open chequebook and be able to buy his way to success. He will have to do it the way this club is run, sensibly, prudently, and we understand that is a difficult ask to find that character."'
The likes of Alan Curbishley, Steve Bruce and Neil Warnock have emerged as early favourites with various bookmakers.
Bruce and Warnock are available after parting company with Sunderland and QPR recently, while former West Ham and Charlton boss Curbishley has been out of management in recent years but got the backing of Morgan.
"He's got a great track record, he's been there and done that before and he's exactly the calibre of person that we're looking for," he said.
Morgan will be hoping whoever takes charge can mirror the achievements of Roy Hodgson, who was appointed West Brom manager 12 months ago with 13 games to go in succession to Roberto Di Matteo.
After a watching brief against West Ham, the Baggies lost only two of their final 12 games to survive and it is that sort of form that will be needed to keep Wolves in the top flight.
McCarthy's departure was announced this morning after the former Sunderland boss was informed of the decision.
Wolves, in a media statement, reported: "Wolves have today announced that manager, Mick McCarthy, has left the club with immediate effect.
"The board took the difficult decision to terminate Mick's contract after a run of form which has seen Wolves pick up only 14 points in the last 22 league games, after a promising start to the season, culminating in yesterday's 5-1 defeat at home to West Bromwich Albion.
"Terry Connor will take charge of team training in the interim until a new manager is appointed.
"The board would like to place on record their sincere thanks and appreciation to Mick McCarthy and he leaves with the very best wishes of everyone connected to the club."
Wolves managed to stay out of the bottom three despite a poor sequence of results until the home setback by Aston Villa in mid-January.
The win at QPR 10 days ago ended a run of 11 games without a win in all competitions but it was only a temporary reprieve before their fourth successive home setback, against the Baggies, sealed McCarthy's fate.
McCarthy cleared his office at the club today and expressed his hope that Wolves would stay up.
He said: "I just want to thank everyone for what has been nearly six wonderful years.
"I feel we've achieved a lot both for me personally and as a club.
"I've had a great working relationship with everybody at the club and would like to thank all those who have contributed to the success that we've had, and also to the fans who have supported me through thick and thin.
"I really feel it is a privilege to have managed such a great club and I've had the best of times.
"I want to send my best wishes to everybody and also to the new guy that comes in.
"And to everyone - please stay up!"