Billy Reid must be glad to see the back of 2011 after a year from hell for his Hamilton Accies side.
Twelve months ago, things started out well enough for the Lanarkshire outfit – draws with Motherwell and Celtic in the SPL sandwiched a win over Alloa Athletic in the Scottish Cup in January – but it soon took a turn for the worse.
Accies did not win at home again until May, their sole league victory at New Douglas Park last season, and were duly relegated to the First Division.
The New Year has arrived with the club teetering somewhat precariously, six points above bottom club Queen of the South in Scotland's second tier.
They have, though, made a similar start to this year, defeating the Dumfries side on Monday ahead of a William Hill Scottish Cup fourth-round tie away to St Mirren on Saturday.
That result would have been heartening, even if it did little to make their lowly league position any more palatable.
Indeed, after a run of just two wins in nine matches – which includes a 6-1 home defeat by Dundee – it was thought that Reid offered his resignation, only for chairman and friend Ronnie MacDonald to refuse.
The manager had always maintained that success at Hamilton would prove cyclical and that a fall from grace – or from the Premier League, at least – was inevitable.
Yet the current situation is a far cry from that of July, 2010, when he turned down the vacant post at Swansea City – and according to defender Mark McLaughlin, Reid's detractors would do well to remember the loyalty he showed.
"The work he has done at the club with the resources he's had has been incredible," said McLaughlin, who played under Reid at Clyde.
"He had a chance to go down south to a big club but obviously felt he still had work to do at Hamilton, although the way things are going he wouldn't have thought he'd have this much to do.
"We are going through a spell with a few changes happening at the club and a number of young players coming through as well. A lot of personnel have changed, but I'm sure Billy will turn us around."
As well as contending with the loss of the youngsters he had guided from the club's acclaimed youth set-up to first-team stardom – James McCarthy, James McArthur and Brian Easton – Reid has also had to deal with an abundance of injuries to key players.
Goalkeeper Tomas Cerny – once linked with both halves of the Old Firm – is the latest big-name casualty to find himself on the sidelines.
The prolonged loss of club captain Alex Neil, however, was arguably the biggest factor in their decline throughout 2011.
Veteran midfielder Neil was a source of experience, advice and protection for McArthy et al as they felt their way into the Hamilton side.
Accies have since flooded their senior squad with more precocious youngsters, intent on emulating their feted predecessors, yet their development has stuttered without a figure such as Neil on which to lean.
And while McLaughlin acknowledges the impact of his absence, he is sure Accies have the right man at the helm to transform their fortunes in 2011.
"Obviously injuries haven't helped. Alex Neil and Tomas Cerny are massive players for us," he said.
"But I'm sure Billy will be the manager at Hamilton for a long time if he doesn't take on something else. I'm sure he'll be there for the next year anyway."