Dismissing Peter Grant was no magic bullet.
In their first outing since parting ways with Grant, Dunfermline slipped to yet another damaging defeat.
A 3-1 reverse against fellow strugglers Morton sees the Fifers remain winless and cut adrift at the foot of the Championship.
Courier Sport was at East End Park to analyse the action.
The relegation battle is real
Forget aspirational talk of a playoff push.
The task of the next Dunfermline manager is Championship survival.
Not a soul in that Pars dressing room signed up for a relegation scrap but, now five points behind the guaranteed safety of eighth spot, they are in one.
More than a third of the season has come and gone. The danger is very real.
So, do they have the gumption and bottle to scratch and claw for every precious point? That is the challenge ahead.
Whether Dunfermline can realign their expectations, grasp the reality of the situation and start grinding out victories will define what division the club are in next term.
A massive week
Given the Pars’ precarious situation, time is increasingly of the essence in the search for Grant’s successor.
Thomas Meggle, Dunfermline sporting director and member of ownership group DAFC Fussball GmbH, is in Scotland and liaised with Whittaker and Greg Shields during the Morton clash.
He will also be a key member of the selection panel for the next manager.
And all eyes will be on East End Park in the coming days for signs of white smoke.
Perhaps the most predictable element of Morton’s victory was Gary Oliver’s clinical brace.
Oliver, 26, has now bagged 10 goals in 21 appearances against the Pars.
His best tally against any other club is five (Ayr United).
Allied with Gozie Ugwu running riot — a player they have struggled to contain at both Raith Rovers and Morton — there was a creeping familiarity about the Pars’ vanquishers.
Beleaguered Dunfermline fans can take solace from their midfield duo of Matty Todd and Paul Allan.
The pair were teammates in the Pars youth ranks from the age of ten and started a senior match together for the first time on Saturday; a heartening story on a lamentable afternoon.
And the Fife Elite Football Academy graduates did themselves proud.
⚽️ Another disappointing afternoon for the Pars, but wonderful moment for young Matty Todd
He and fellow @FifeEliteFA graduate Paul Allan impressed, and his goal was richly merited
— Alan Temple (@alanftemple) November 7, 2021
Allan, a regular in recent weeks, took the responsibility of dropping deep and starting attacks with pin-point passing.
Todd was bombast personified, bursting into the box whenever the opportunity presented itself.
His headed goal to make it 1-1 was richly-merited reward for his energy and endeavour.
Given he had played a total of 18 minutes this term prior to Saturday, it was no surprise to see Todd replaced in the dying embers.
But he will be knocking on the door for another start when the Pars face Inverness next weekend.