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It was a move met with much derision when then Southampton Chairman Nicola Cortese sacked successful manager Nigel Adkins and replaced him with a little known Argentine named Mauricio Pochettino in January 2013
At the time it seemed quite an extraordinary move, particularly given that at that time Pochettino did not speak any English.
The move was an unprecedented success however with Pochettino leading the Saints to an 8th placed finish in the Premier League playing a high octane brand of attacking football that made the most of Saints’ impressive academy graduates.
Keeping faith with their blueprint
Pochettino was soon on the move, replacing Tim Sherwood at Tottenham Hotspur in May of 2014.
Southampton kept faith with their blueprint of employing young upcoming managerial talent, and the team continued to thrive under the tutelage of Barcelona legend Ronald Koeman.
Much like his predecessor the Dutchman was soon poached by a ‘bigger’ club, leaving the Saints under a cloud to join Everton.
In different circumstances, Claude Puel’s tenure may have been judged a success. For a club of Southampton’s stature an 8th placed finish and a cup final is no mean feat.
The Frenchman had lost the fans with his playing style however, and it was perhaps unsurprising when he and the club parted ways earlier this summer.
Southampton have once again gone for somewhat of an unknown quantity in Mauricio Pellegrino, his previous exposure to the English game just a handful of Liverpool appearances under Rafael Benitez.
Whilst the Argentine has a mixed record as a manger the Saints fan’s will be hoping that he can replicate the success of compatriot Pochettino. As Puel has shown a top half finish is no longer enough for the ambitious Saints.
Pellegrino will also be expected to entertain, and the club will hope to see more young talent on show. Should he manage the feat the ‘vultures’ will no doubt be circling above St Mary’s once again.
Written by Will Trattles
Follow Will on Twitter @WillTratts
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