Southampton may still be doomed and get relegated from the Premier League this season, but Nathan Jones is out after losing seven of his eight PL games in charge.
Maybe now Saints still have a chance of survival?
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After a few months in charge it just didn’t work out for Jones and now Southampton are looking for their third manager in a season as they are four points from safety with 16 games to go. In the meantime, Ruben Selles will take training on an interim basis.
There is now no room left for error both in terms of their owners, Sport Republic, getting this decision right and in terms of whoever comes in as their next manager.
Nine of Southampton’s final 16 games are against teams from the current top 10 in the table and they probably need to win at least eight games and hope for plenty of upset victories along the way.
Below is a look at the favorites to become the new Southampton manager with some analysis on who could be the best fit.
Southampton next manager candidates
According to several bookmakers, Gerrard is the favorite to take charge. He will be hungry to prove he was hard done by at Aston Villa and given his work at Rangers before that, there is a very good manager and leader in there. Gerrard’s name will be able to attract better players to join Southampton in the summer, no matter what league they are in. Does he want a relegation on his managerial CV, though?
The American was fired by Leeds but could have a quick return to the Premier League. Marsch is someone Southampton admired from afar and his tactics are very similar to the ones Ralph Hasenhuttl used for the last four years before he was fired in November 2022. Marsch was someone the Southampton hierarchy planned to make a move for in the future and maybe now is the time? His positive vibes worked for Leeds in a relegation scrap last season but maybe he wants the USMNT job next? Even so, a year at Southampton may not be the worst fit for Marsch and it could actually be a better job for him, long-term, than Leeds.
The former River Plate boss was linked with a move to Saints before Jones was appointed and his work with the Argentine giants was exceptional. Currently without a job, this could be a good long-term hire. But the big question all of these potential new managers will have is simple: are they just being asked to keep Saints in the Premier League this season? Or is this a longer term project, even if that means relegation initially?
Other names mentioned
- Ralph Hasenhuttl: a few months after being fired, sure there won’t be a sensational return?
- Sam Allardyce: will Big Sam dust off his packed of chewing gum for one last go?
- Mauricio Pochettino: does he want to return to Saints and save them? He’s out of work…
- Ruben Selles: in caretaker charge and well respected at the club
- Nuno Espirito Santo: will make Saints hard to beat but tough to see
- Rafael Benitez: would use all of his experience to organize them
- Scott Parker: he has plenty of promise but has only just joined Club Brugge
- Ange Postecoglu: tough to see him leaving Celtic for a relegation scrap