In the end, it was unanimous. Sunday's damaging 4-0 defeat, by an Aberdeen side who also have little besides pride to play for after a turbulent season of their own, was the nadir of Nick Montgomery's tenure.

During his post-match press remarks, he spoke of his belief that Hibs were heading in the right direction. "I believe that this club is on the right trajectory moving forward," he said. The display on the pitch suggested otherwise, and the volume of jeering from the few supporters who had held on until the bitter end told its own story.

READ MORE - Hibs sack Nick Montgomery for 'failing to deliver the results we'd hoped for'

Montgomery has always been one to search for the positives in any situation, often to his detriment - references to being '20 seconds away from jubilation' against Motherwell didn't sit right with a fanbase who were already narked that merely finishing in the top six was seen as a target - and he resorted to that tactic again in the aftermath of Sunday's match. 

"There have been some difficult moments this season but that was a real tough one," he admitted. "I thought for 30 minutes we had all the play, we had numerous box entries, shots on target, all the momentum, and then they have one shot and we concede. That's happened too many times this season."

He wasn't wrong, and he might well highlight the positives when analysing games with his players, but most supporters care only for the final result and his tendency to throw stats like that into his after-match comments served only to antagonise fans, particularly after such a comprehensive dismantling. 

There was a feeling among the Hibs hierarchy, after Lee Johnson's departure, that they needed a head coach who would bond with the fans. Montgomery's man-management skills had been lauded during his time in charge of Central Coast Mariners but there was never any real evidence of a connection, and his decision to embark on the customary post-match applause after Sunday seemed ill-advised at best.

"There's definitely change coming, and we need a little bit of patience," were what turned out to be his final words as Hibs head coach to the media on Sunday afternoon. 

He was right again, but probably not in the way he might have envisaged. Despite his belief that everyone at the club knew the size of the challenge facing the manager and his staff when he was appointed, the board convened on Monday and arrived at the unanimous decision that a change in head coach was needed. Montgomery was told the news on Monday night.

Club chiefs had already made his position clear with the statement issued in the wake of the team's failure to finish in the top six: there had to be a marked improvement in results, or further discussions would be had. Despite the nature of some results earlier in the season, Montgomery's position had been relatively safe. But the statement, hurried out in a bid to calm an angry fanbase, did him no favours. 

More damaging was the fact that Johnson, who was sacked after Hibs began the league campaign with three straight defeats, had a more successful time in charge at the club in terms of footballing achievements with a fifth-place finish, European football, and taking the team to within one two-legged tie of Europa Conference League group football. There were other issues at play but with Montgomery essentially headhunted by director of football Brian McDermott following his achievements with Central Coast Mariners, it was expected that he would be a step up from the former Bristol City and Sunderland man. 

McDermott was installed as director of football in May last year, brought in following another internal review at the club, and led the search for Johnson's replacement. He knew Montgomery from both his time as a player in England and had been following his coaching career in Australia, and presented him as an option on whom the board agreed. This was a change from previous processes, when chief executive Ben Kensell took the lead on sourcing candidates - but Montgomery is the fourth managerial sacking he has overseen, and while there has been plenty of progress off the pitch on his watch, it is not being mirrored on it. 

There will be a further change in how the hunt for Montgomery's successor is conducted, following the appointment of Malky Mackay as the club's new sporting director. Mackay, who will oversee the footballing structure, officially starts work on June 1 and will lead the search for a new head coach - and it will be a head coach rather than a manager as part of the structural changes - as well as reviewing individual departments within the club. McDermott is already focused on recruitment, with work ongoing in the background - but the imminent changes at the club will also have an impact on the summer transfer window, which is expected to be busy with outgoings and incomings. 

READ MORE - Hibs and Black Knights set to examine top-six failure

The Black Knights, who have two representatives on the board in Bill Foley and Ryan Caswell, will no doubt have their preferred candidates for manager and can make recommendations. They won't have the final say on any appointment but could bring new faces to the table, with no one currently lined up by the club. 

Then there's the review. The decision to sack Montgomery does not signal the end of the review; it remains ongoing and the club plans to update supporters on the outcome in due course.

For now though, David Gray will embark on his fourth spell as interim boss, tasked with steering the club to the end of another disappointing season, at which point the annual managerial hunt will begin, in earnest, once again.