As Humza Yousaf walked towards that increasingly famous Bute House podium he looked the picture of confidence.

The task before him involved a certain degree of unpleasantness but there was no need to be brutal. The partnership with the Scottish Greens had outlived its usefulness, that is all.

How long, one wonders, before the same is being said of him?

Appearances aside, this was a leader whose own party had been in two minds about giving him the job. A few percentage points the other way and it would have been Kate Forbes standing in front of the gilded mirror, facing the press.

Only she would have severed relations with the Greens on day one. As it is, the First Minister will be seen as merely playing catch-up. He has done the right thing in the eyes of his critics inside and outside the party, but only once he had exhausted all other possibilities.

Only days ago he was happy to continue the partnership, so what had changed in the meantime? There were particular events, the failure to reach a key emissions target and the pause on prescribing puberty blockers, that placed the partnership under strain.

But it has been a troubled pairing since Mr Yousaf became First Minister. He inherited the relationship from his predecessor, Nicola Sturgeon. Like much else she left him, it turned out to be fool’s gold.

Mr Yousaf may be congratulating himself on his decisiveness. He will have been cheered by the number of colleagues telling him he has done the right thing and not before time. But he is naive if he thinks those same critics will now rally around him, all bad feeling forgotten. They have scented blood, and now they have tasted it.

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The First Minister believes he is up to the job of helming a minority government. There is of course a precedent for an SNP leader doing so, but if it is not overstating the obvious, Humza Yousaf is no Alex Salmond. He has nothing to offer the other parties in exchange for their support.

Only the Scottish Greens were willing to shore up his party in parliament and he has made sworn enemies of them. Now a vote of no confidence looms and the Greens say they won't support him. Was this allowed for in his plan? Was there even a plan beyond getting to the end of another week?

The First Minister has handed his critics a gift in the run-up to the general election. Their taunts about a “coalition of chaos” rang true yesterday as the great Edinburgh flounce-off unfolded.

At the rate he is losing friends and making enemies, Mr Yousaf will struggle to last two weeks rather than the two years to the next Scottish Parliament elections. Whatever he wished for on becoming First Minister it cannot have been this.