THE regularity with which Doug Ellis sacked managers during his decades-long long reign as the Aston Villa chairman led former England striker turned television pundit Jimmy Greaves to christen him Deadly Doug.

The nickname, as Tommy Docherty, Billy McNeill and Dr Jo Venglos, among many others, all came and went at Villa Park in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, stuck. 

Dave Cormack, the major Aberdeen shareholder, is at risk of being given a less than flattering moniker if he is not very careful after axing yet another occupant of the Pittodrie dugout. 

Barry Robson became the fourth manager to be tapped on his shoulder, handed his P45 and shown the exit door in the four years that Cormack has been in situ yesterday morning.

He is fast gaining a reputation for being among the most trigger-happy chairmen in the Scottish game. 

READ MOREBarry Robson sacked as Aberdeen manager

So what should we call him? Dangerous Dave? Diabolical Dave? Dastardly Dave? Cut-throat Cormack? The Aberdonian Assassin? The Garthdee Gunslinger? He would struggle to sue for defamation of character if we did.

But how about this? Dunderheid Dave.

The Herald: The fates suffered by Stephen Glass, Jim Goodwin and Robson were entirely understandable. Aberdeen’s performances and results both fell a long way short of what was expected and demanded during their brief tenures.

Cormack, though, was the man who sanctioned their appointments in the first place. Did the trio really have the nous needed to survive, never mind flourish, in one the most demanding positions in the game in this country? Their failures have come as no great surprise to many seasoned observers.

Bringing in Glass was a particularly bizarre move. Yes, he had been a brilliant player for them back in the day and had worked extensively as a coach. But he had only ever managed at a low level in Ireland and America. He had, too, no noteworthy trophy wins on his curriculum vitae.

His replacement Goodwin had certainly shown great promise during his spells in charge at Alloa and St Mirren. But was he really ready for Aberdeen after little over two seasons as a full-time manager? It soon became glaringly obvious that he was not.

Then there is Robson. There was a compelling case for giving the former midfielder the job on a permanent basis in May last year given how well he had fared during his stint as caretaker. He had completely transformed their fortunes. But did overseeing youth teams really prepare him for the step up?

There was another issue. It was always inevitable that Glass and Robson would go through difficult periods given their lack of experience and highly likely that fans would grow restless when they did.

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Were they not deserving of more time? Should they not have been allowed to make mistakes and learn from them? Why bring in a promising young manager and then get rid of him during a dip in form in his first full campaign?

The Herald: Yes, they were given considerable funds to strengthen their squads. But you do not become an accomplished Aberdeen manager overnight. Heck, even Sir Alex Ferguson endured a rocky start to his time in the north-east.

Robson had to negotiate two Europa League qualifiers and six Conference League group games as well as all of their domestic fixtures this season. That took a heavy toll on his charges and should have been taken into account far more than it was.

“This season has been gruelling,” said their captain Graeme Shinnie following the Viaplay Cup final defeat to Rangers at Hampden last month. “It has been tough, one of the toughest I’ve had in football. We have done a lot of travelling and had a lot of big games.”

Cormack is an impressive bloke, inspiring even. He grew up in poverty in Aberdeen, worked his way out of the “slums”, founded several software companies and became a self-made multi-millionaire. He has donated huge sums to charitable causes through his Cormack Family Foundation over the years.

Dons diehards can certainly be relaxed about their long-term stability with a wealthy benefactor who is every bit as passionate about and ambitious for his home town team as they are at the helm. He has ploughed a large portion of his personal fortune into his boyhood heroes. He footed most of the bill for the construction of their £12m training facility Cormack Park.

READ MORERobson will bounce back from Aberdeen sack, insists McInnes

But does the United States-based entrepreneur really understand the business of football? His managerial choices so far would suggest that he still has much to learn about what it takes to run a successful club. He has to get his next appointment right. It has been fairly turbulent since Derek McInnes was allowed to depart.

He also seems incredibly sensitive to any unrest in the stands. He needs to stand by his man far more going forward than he has done to date.

The Herald: Aberdeen require someone who has been around the block a couple of times, who has worked in the top flight in Scotland, England or elsewhere in Europe before and who has proved he is capable of delivering silverware. There is no shortage of them out there. Bringing in Alex Neil, who has been installed as the bookmakers’ favourite, would be an inspired decision.

Deadly Doug Ellis had another bizarre claim to fame. The package holiday pioneer was adamant that it was he, not Brazilian great Leonidas, who had invented the overhead kick. Dave Cormack is not prone to making such grandiose declarations. But he has to raise his game considerably and stick one in the top corner or he risks being saddled with the Dunderheid Dave tag.