He would, he readily admitted, have regretted it for the rest of his life had he not thrown the Sheriff's hat into the ring.
And at little after 10.30pm last night, so the name Bryan Gunn was added to City's managerial roll-call – 22 years after it all began, 'The Gunner' was now head man, the Gaffer, the Boss.
The Gunner had even beaten The Guv'nor to the Carrow Road hot seat as he emerged victorious from that five-man short list.
“This has to be the fourth proudest day of my life,” said the 45-year-old Canary goalkeeping legend, handed the manager's job until at least the end of the season following last week's dismissal of Glenn Roeder.
“The birth of my three children in Norwich; them being born in the city – and then being named as the manager of this football club,” said Gunn, joined at the top table at Colney by new chief scout John Deehan and new first team coach Ian Crook.
The latter will be leaving on a jet plane from Australia sometime in the next 24 hours as the Class of 93 plans the mother of all reunion parties at home to Southampton next Tuesday night.
By when their number could have swollen again with sources suggesting that Hartlepool Reserve boss Ian Butterworth was being lined up as Gunn's No2 – thereby completing 'Team Gunn'.
“I've played for my country, I've played for Aberdeen and Hibernian and Scotland – and as a football player, you'd say that was the pinnacle.
“But I think, for me, today is the pinnacle football-wise and I'm really looking forward to the opportunity that's been given to me by the directors.”
It was an opportunity that arose like never before on the back of Saturday's 4-0 win over Barnsley. “Put it this way, if we'd have lost 5-0 I'd never have applied,” he admitted as the Gunn household headed off into North Norfolk for a council of war.
“Saturday gave me the decision that I must go for it,” he admitted.
“Otherwise I would regret it for the rest of my life. And speaking with Susan and Melissa and Angus – and family and friends as we were on a break at the Hoste Arms in Burnham Market – the elation of the result and the reaction of the Press and the supporters after the game, it all just goes to show you what can be achieved if people are positive and want to win.”
The challenge then was to put a 'Team Gunn' in place – one that would trump anything that his gathering rivals could muster. At which point, he turned to his well-thumbed contacts book and worked out the time difference with Sydney, Australia, where the 'high performance director' at Newcastle would field the first of many a late-night call.
“Again that all happened pretty quickly – I had to present a team to the board of directors that would make their mouth water as well,” he revealed. The fact that Deehan had been one of his early well-wishers going into that key Barnsley game made that another easy call.
“They obviously had a lot of very high profile candidates apply for the job and it was the commitment of Ian Crook to myself – flying all the way from Australia – to join the team and from John Deehan who again, as soon as I picked up the phone to him, it was a case of anything he could do to help me…
“Not just coming in as chief scout and replacing me, but using John as a mentor. He's been through many scenarios as a coach and a manager – and Ian as well. So there's no reason why we can't start picking up positive results and start moving up the table.”
The one fear on many a mind – not least that of ex-City boss Ken Brown overnight – was that for someone who has achieved so much in his 22 years as an adopted son of Norfolk, that football could still chew him up and spit him out.
He could – and will – enjoy everyone's best wishes at the start of his Canary managerial career, but at the end of it? What then?
“That's understandable,” said Gunn.
“But at the same time, somebody's got to do it. Somebody's got to be brave enough to do it.
“I'm putting my head above the parapet. I want to see this club retain its status in the Championship – and, at least, there'll be continuity with my voice in the dressing room.
“And a couple of fresh faces coming in on the coaching side won't do any harm – so it won't happen. We'll make sure it won't happen.”
If his mobile phone was any guide, it will prove one of football's more popular appointments. He's never, ever been short of people wishing him well – particularly given the way that the family's life has panned out and all that they have achieved in terms of the Francesca Gunn Laboratory.
“Sir Alex (Ferguson) has already sent me a 'Good luck!' message this morning because obviously I've been speaking to him about this situation; Gordon Strachan, Alex McLeish…'
The list was already 50-strong. And likely to grow with every passing minute…
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