The men holding the purse strings at Manchester City sprang a mild surprise when they fired 2012 title-winning manager Mancini a few weeks ago.
But while City chiefs came to the conclusion that Mancini was the wrong man to take the club forward, the Italian had long since established himself as one of the club's all-time greats among fans.
Mancini moved on to pastures new without too much bitterness, even taking out an advert in the Manchester Evening News to thank the club's fans for "Three unforgettable years".
And City fans were so touched by that gesture that they decided to repay it with one of their own, connecting via social networking sites to collect the £7,000 needed for a lavish full-colour 'thank you' advert in Italy's daily sports bible, Gazzetta dello Sport, reproduced below courtesy of our colleagues in Italy.
"Grazie Mancini" the advert says at the top; below are the words, "Per sempre uno di noi", meaning "always one of us" - though below that is the freer English translation that might sound more familiar to English ears: "Once a blue, always a blue."
Somehow, it feels to us like there might be more truth in that than anyone yet realises; after all, City have spent years trying to follow in Chelsea's footsteps.
So with Jose Mourinho on his way back to Stamford Bridge, now is probably the time to stick fifty quid on Mancini enjoying huge success elsewhere in Europe, then returning to Manchester in five years' time to take the reins at the Etihad Stadium once again...