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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 5:26 pm 
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Can things get any worse these days? Well, that all depends on what you perceive to be the worst case scenario, because at the moment Saints appear to be facing two main options: either Rupert Lowe crawls back into the club via the consortium of a former business associate, or Saints fall out of the football league altogether and end up in the Blue Square Conference. At least according to the Daily Telegraph.

“Such is the concern over the Saints' future that Brian Lee, the chairman of the Blue Square Conference, has been contacted by a third party – not somebody connected with Southampton – to discuss the possibility of admitting them into the 'fifth' division should they go to the wall,” The Telegraph reported.

It is still unthinkable that Saints will cease to exist entirely, but the fact that people are now apparently planning for what might happen should the club go completely bust is quite a worry. And let’s not forget that admission into the Conference is still only a “possibility” according to the national press. We might not even be allowed to do that.

Speaking frankly, I’d rather watch table football than a club run by Rupert Lowe for a third time. So if it has to be non-league then I’d still take that.

Please don’t be that.

Has it really come to this?


According to a mate, Southampton have applied to join the Blue Square Premier to start next season. If a club actually folds then reapplies they have to enter 2 levels below where they were originally. In a non-league report in the newspaper last week, the powers that be said they'd be welcomed with open arms. This can only be good news for Chester if that happens. :coffee:

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 8:57 pm 
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Southampton's administrators could be on the verge of completing a deal to save the club.

Saints are desperately looking for a buyer to avoid going bust and have been in talks with a number of interested parties - thought to include a bid backed by legendary former player Matt Le Tissier.

Joint-administrator Mark Fry is holding further discussions with two "serious" groups and has also received some late new interest in the south-coast club.

"We are talking to a couple of seriously interested parties and there are some late expressions of interest, but we are hoping to align ourselves with a potential bidder within the next 48 hours," Fry told the Southern Daily Echo.

Relegated Saints will kick off next season in League One on minus 10 points after their parent company, Southampton Leisure Holdings plc, was placed in administration last month.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 11:03 am 
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Southampton hope to find out on Friday whether their former talisman Matt Le Tissier has saved the club yet again.

Le Tissier, the star of many a successful relegation scrap for Saints during the 1990s, is a backer of the Pinnacle group of investors who are looking to complete a takeover at St Mary's.

The consortium entered a period of exclusivity three weeks ago, during which time they could not be gazumped by other potential investors interested in buying the cash-strapped club.

And optimism is growing on the south coast, not least after a picture of Le Tissier apparently meeting another legendary ex-Saints player, former Newcastle and England boss Kevin Keegan, appeared in the local media on Thursday morning.

The club were unable to shed any light on the Keegan link but, with Pinnacle's exclusivity deadline due to expire on Friday, they are eagerly awaiting an announcement.

Current Saints boss, Dutchman Mark Wotte, remains in the dark over his future, and said earlier this week: "The club has to appoint a manager and I hope I can continue in that role but, if not, then they have to make a decision about that."

Southampton will kick off in Coca-Cola League One on minus 10 points next season after their parent company entered administration in April.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 11:11 am 
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09.39: Really interesting on in The Southern Daily Echo.

They report that one K.Keegan Esq has met with Matt Le Tissier and Leon Crouch, and suggest that he might be talking about taking the Southampton job.

He knows how to pick stable clubs, doesn't he?

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Fri Jun 19, 2009 12:37 pm 
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Headline Of The Day
'Good News: Le Tissier will become Saints chairman today. Bad News: He wants to bring in Keegan as manager' - It's long, but well done indeed to The Sun.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Fri Jun 19, 2009 7:35 pm 
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Matt Le Tissier's bid to become chairman of Southampton has hit a late snag.

The legendary former Saints player is spearheading the purchase of the troubled south-coast club by the Pinnacle consortium, who expected to complete their buy-out on Friday.

But some of the finer details of the deal have not been ironed out with the Football League, who deducted Saints 10 points after their parent company Southampton Leisure Holdings plc went into administration in April.

The League will now hold an emergency meeting on Monday to discuss the situation, even though Pinnacle's three-week exclusivity period ends on Friday.

The delay means more frustration for Saints fans, with the club remaining in danger of extinction on a day which began with high hopes of Le Tissier taking over and continued speculation Kevin Keegan could be returning to the club he played for in the 1980s.

Joint-administrator Mark Fry told the Daily Echo: "There are a number of very small issues that remain but the principle one of which is the Football League situation.

"They have agreed to have an emergency meeting on Monday but until any bidder can be satisfied about membership of the League they won't complete a purchase of the club."

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Mon Jun 22, 2009 12:18 pm 
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Prospective Southampton chairman Matt Le Tissier has confirmed he has spoken with Kevin Keegan.

It was revealed last week that Keegan was being considered to take charge of The Saints should, as expected, Le Tissier's Pinnacle Consortium succeed in their takeover at St Mary's.

Le Tissier has admitted talking with Keegan - but insists he is just one of a number of names he had talked with.

"Kevin is not the only one I have sat down and talked to, I have sat down and talked to a lot of my contacts in the game," he told Sky Sports News.

"We need to clarify the manager's position and we will look at that, I have spoken to a lot of people and taken a lot of advice and when the takeover is complete we will sit down and talk about it.

"For me this is a new job and I need to gather as much information as I can and there is several other people I have spoken to and no decision on a new manager has been made.

"Unfortunately Kevin was pictured, and the papers got hold of it and everyone put two and two together."

The Football League are set for an emergency meeting on Monday to discuss Pinnacle's bid, with one of their conditions being that they have the right to appeal against a ten-point penalty they are currently due to start next season with after the club fell into administration last season.

But the Football League are determined that Pinnacle agree to start next term with the penalty in place and they will not try and appeal the ruling.

"Issues have cropped up, we are a still very much in the running and determined, and we think it is in the best interests of the club," he continued.

"This is a great way to put something more back into the club and hopefully get us back one division and if all goes well even the Premier League."

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:58 pm 
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Matt Le Tissier's bid to become Southampton chairman is over with the south-coast club now days from going out of business.

Saints legend Le Tissier, the hero of many a relegation battle as a player, will not be the club's saviour off the field after the Pinnacle consortium he was backing pulled out of the running to take control.

Administrator Mark Fry is now thought to be left with two potential buyers - but said last week he would have to consider starting to wind up the club by Friday.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Not Marching On Much Longer
PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2009 4:26 pm 
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Southampton have finally been rescued from administration after Swiss businessman Markus Liebherr completed his takeover at St Mary's.

The League One club were on the brink of going out of business over the summer but joint-administrator Mark Fry has now signalled an end to the three-month saga by confirming the deal.

"The sale of the Saints to Markus Liebherr is a fantastic opportunity to rebuild the club," said Fry.

"Markus Liebherr was attracted to Southampton by a number of qualities which include the club's rich sporting heritage, loyal fan base, first-class stadium and training facilities and the potential for the Saints to regain their rightful place in the higher echelons of English football.

"I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all Saints fans for their support and patience in what have been uncertain times for the club. I would also like to wish both Markus and the Club well for future success."

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 Post subject: Re: Saints March On
PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2009 4:30 pm 
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Good. Hope he's a good owner for them.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints March On
PostPosted: Fri Jul 10, 2009 12:38 pm 
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Said Mark Wotte on Sky Sports News yesterday afternoon when asked whether he would stay on as Southampton manager:

"I just signed a contract as manager of Southampton, so I don't think that's even a question."

Said a statement on the Southampton Official Website yesterday evening:

'Southampton Football Club can confirm that Mark Wotte has left the club...Our decision is part of a wider strategic plan being implemented to improve all aspects of the club's operations, both on and off the field.'

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 Post subject: Re: Saints March On
PostPosted: Fri Jul 10, 2009 8:04 pm 
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Resurrection Joe wrote:
Said Mark Wotte on Sky Sports News yesterday afternoon when asked whether he would stay on as Southampton manager:

"I just signed a contract as manager of Southampton, so I don't think that's even a question."

Said a statement on the Southampton Official Website yesterday evening:

'Southampton Football Club can confirm that Mark Wotte has left the club...Our decision is part of a wider strategic plan being implemented to improve all aspects of the club's operations, both on and off the field.'


I don't think that was even a contract

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 Post subject: Southampton name Pardew as boss
PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:19 am 
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Southampton name Pardew as boss


Southampton have named former West Ham and Charlton manager Alan Pardew as their new boss.

His appointment on a three-year deal was rubber-stamped in the early hours of Friday, BBC Radio Solent can reveal.

Pardew, 47, said: "I'm proud and very excited to be joining a club with an immense history and huge potential."

New Saints owner Markus Liebherr said:"We are delighted to have been able to attract Alan to St Mary's from a very strong field of candidates."

Pardew, who has been out of football since leaving Charlton in November 2008, replaces Mark Wotte.

The Dutchman made his exit after Swiss businessman Liebherr completed his takeover of the troubled club earlier this month.

Saints came close to going bust after they were relegated from the Championship in May, and will begin their League One campaign on minus 10 points.

Liebherr added: "Alan has a strong track record and impressed us with his vision, commitment and ambition. We look forward to working with him."

Pardew took West Ham to the FA Cup final in 2006, but his spell at Charlton was less successful with the club languishing at the foot of the Championship table when he departed.

But the former Reading boss said he was relishing his latest challenge.

"Everything is here in terms of quality of stadium, training facilities and, now, financial stability," he said.

"I'm look forward to working with the squad and with the executive management as part of a team committed to achieving progress.

"Of course, I will bring my own style of football management to the club, but as part of a plan being evolved it to achieve long term success."

Stewart Henderson has been in temporary charge of Southampton and is taking the squad through pre-season training and preparing them for a friendly against Ajax on Saturday.


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 Post subject: Saints bring in Coppell?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 08, 2009 8:35 am 
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Incase you've forgotten what Steve Coppell looks like, He's the one in the suit that looks like he's being charged up

Southampton are lining up Steve Coppell for a new director of football role at St Mary’s.

Coppell is wanted to help recently installed boss Alan Pardew turn around League One’s bottom club.

He has not worked since quitting Reading at the end of last season but Saints hope to tempt him back into the game.

Pardew played under Coppell at Crystal Palace in the late 80s and the pair are expected to work closely together to bring in new talent.

Coppell has good experience of how a director of football works from his time at Reading where Nick Hammond held a similar post.

But he faces a tricky test at St Mary’s where a Saints team that began the season with a 10 point suspension have yet to win any of their six league games.

Saints are now backed by Swiss billionaire businessman Markus Liebherr and have already paid out £1million to sign striker Ricky Lambert from Bristol Rovers this summer.

And club chairman Nicola Cortese is keen to have a capable pair of hands running the club’s transfer policy.

He has previously said: “The position would be full-time and we want somebody with knowledge and experience. He will then be making transfers as well.”


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 Post subject: Re: Saints looking to bring in Coppell?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 1:16 pm 
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Southampton executive chairman Nicola Cortese does not like walking past the trophy cabinet at St Mary's Stadium.

"I saw a beautiful samurai sword in there and asked how we had won it," Cortese told me. "I was told it was to commemorate a game. I said we need real trophies."

Given the club's recent history of uncertainty and failure, when survival not silverware was the prime concern, Southampton's battered and bruised fans could be forgiven for wondering just what planet Cortese is from.

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Liebherr (left) and Cortese have ambitiousplans for the League One club

After all, when German-born billionaire Markus Liebherr's takeover of the club was completed in July, Saints were days from going out of business and, after an unspectacular start to the current campaign, are still on minus points following a deduction imposed last season.

The takeover had been Cortese's idea. Intelligent, hard working and happy with his career, the 40-year-old was a successful banker in Switzerland and Liebherr was one of his clients.

Southampton had first appeared on Cortese's radar in 2007 when he read stories linking Microsoft's Paul Allen with the club, but it wasn't until he received an e-mail in April that he seriously considered the club as an investment.

He thought it would be an interesting private purchase for somebody looking for something a little bit different. Liebherr came to mind.

Cortese initially floated the idea to Liebherr in late May in his office in Zurich and a day later they were standing in the centre circle of St Mary's.

"Markus is into culture and history and had quickly made himself aware of the background of the club. An hour later we were ready to make an offer," said Cortese.

The purchase proved to be complicated, though, with what Cortese describes as "obstacles" delaying the process. One of these obstacles was the exclusivity agreement signed by the rival Pinnacle consortium fronted by Matt Le Tissier. Their bid subsequently collapsed.

Liebherr eventually completed his takeover on 8 July and continued familiarising himself with the club. Liebherr, a big fan of German football, has enthusiastically been watching DVD after DVD of previous Saints teams in action and I'm told he has derived a lot of pleasure so far from his purchase of the club.

"People who know him from business would not recognise him," added Cortese.

Liebherr may be the owner but it is Cortese who runs the League One club.

After the club's pre-season match against Ajax, Liebherr told his trusted advisor that he wanted him to stay on full-time at the club.

"I was giving up a career that had made me very comfortable in all senses," said Cortese. "But Markus said that he needed somebody he could completely trust and talk with about money."

Cortese discussed the situation with his wife, who understood how much time her husband had put into completing the takeover. The executive chairman dryly observed that his wife was prepared to move the family to England but had previously refused to relocate from Zurich to Geneva.

During my conversation with Cortese it became clear the man is calm and controlled. He looked at ease in the surroundings of his luxury hotel. It was easy to imagine why people trust him with their money.

Yet running a football club is a very different proposition to the world of Swiss banking. Cortese wakes up at 5am on the Saturday of a home match and is so nervous that he cannot eat until half-time. His job as a banker was demanding but at least he had weekends off.

Even so, he appears to be relishing his role.

"There is no more internal politics and the club has no debts - nobody dictates our business anymore, we do that," said the executive chairman.

The watchwords from our conversation were stability and discretion. Southampton used to be something of a leaky ship but Cortese is adamant the holes have been plugged. His surprise appointment of Alan Pardew as manager is a case in point.

A lot of Cortese's time at the moment is spent creating a long-term structure for success. There are plans to rejuvenate an Academy that until recently had a proven track record of producing players, redevelop the training ground and empower the club's non-football staff.

Cortese found a workforce understandably suffering from low morale while many staff had multiple duties and more than one line manager. He is carrying out what he terms a "deep analysis".

"People need guidance - and it cannot be three people giving guidance to one person because it is confusing," he said. "People here can add great value but that has not been recognised."

Cortese is also extremely ambitious. At their recent game against Charlton, Addicks chairman Richard Murray asked Cortese where he hoped Southampton would finish this season.

"I told him we wanted to win the league," replied Cortese. "He was about to take a sip of wine but put his glass down without drinking any."

Cortese's plan is for the club to win promotion from League One in two seasons and reach the Premier League in five years. He does not expect Liebherr to enjoy a return on his investment until the club returns to the top flight but reckons Saints can break even in the Championship. In the meantime, there are funds available for Pardew to mould his squad.

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Saints boss Pardew is working hard to make his team competitive

A few hours after interviewing Cortese, I watched Pardew working with his players at the club's training ground. As the late summer sun blazed down, the Saints boss constantly interrupted the game in progress to instil in his players how he wanted them to play. It was fascinating to watch him explain in great detail his ideas for how every attack should unfold - what options his players should take and when.

Cortese appointed Pardew after taking advice from a source whose name he will not reveal. Pardew, who had been out of work since he parted company with Charlton late last year, was unsure at first and had to be convinced that taking over at Saints was the right move.

"They were starting the season on minus 10 and some of the best players had left a team that had been relegated - that worried me," the former Reading, West Ham and Charlton boss told me.

Cortese and chief operations officer Andy Oldknow convinced him he would be given the time to build a new squad. The likes of Dan Harding, Radhi Jaidi, Graeme Murty and Rickie Lambert, who cost £1m, have joined the playing staff, while Pardew has bolstered his coaching team with the arrival of such experienced men as former Brentford boss Wally Downes and ex-Brighton manager Dean Wilkins.

Neverthless, I think Pardew has a tough job at Southampton. Yes, plenty of managers would like to be at a debt-free club with money to spend and playing in a top-class stadium - but with that comes big expectations.

Pardew is under no illusions that Liebherr and Cortese want success, and he reckons his experience of managing expectations could prove vital. He talks with Cortese just about every day and is happy with their working relationship.

"The people here have big plans for this club and I am going to be asked to deliver fairly quickly," said Pardew. "Being debt-free is a nice feeling but my over-riding emotion at the moment is that the team needs to improve."

Pardew has noticed a lack of what he calls "nuts and bolts of football". He is talking about good technical players lacking the work ethic and discipline to succeed.

"Just recently I did a talk to the players, I told them they must play like every game is their last. Potentially it is - one injury, one really bad performance and they may not play for the club again," he said.

He wants the Academy to deliver players with steel as well as skill and is, in the interim, prepared to bring in players with the experience and desire to help Saints win promotion.

There is money to spend but Pardew wants to win promotion in a "fair and honourable way" and, in his words, "not be large". Southampton are unlikely to emerge as the Manchester City of League One.

Saints lost 3-2 at home to Bristol Rovers on Tuesday in what I'm told was a thrilling game. Liebherr came over to watch.

The means Saints have still only won one league match all season and remain bottom of the division. Pardew says promotion is not "off the agenda" this year but admits that his team have a lot more growing to do.

I imagine that many Southampton supporters are just glad that they still have a club to support. As for silverware - the League One trophy would do for starters.

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 Post subject: Decision backfires on Southampton
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:11 pm 
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Cartoon used after Southampton FC's photographer ban

Plymouth Argyle's winning goal against Southampton was captured by a cartoonist after the home side banned photographers from its grounds.

Artist Chris Robinson was hired by the Plymouth Herald newspaper to capture the League One side's 1-0 win at St Mary's stadium on Saturday.

The Southampton club restricted access to an official photographer meaning others were banned from attending.

Mr Robinson, a historian and lifelong Plymouth fan, was asked to provide sketches of the first game of the season by Herald editor Bill Martin, after the newspaper refused to buy official photographs.

The two featured were inspired by football comic strip character Roy of the Rovers.

They show Luke Summerfield's winning goal against the Saints and Argyle's new goalkeeper David Button making a second half save for the Pilgrims.

"The Herald was left with a prospect of just taking pictures from an agency," Mr Robinson said.

"I was watching the game on TV and took a sketch book with me. I have never done anything like this before, I have never known it happen before.

"I would have no aversion to doing it again. It was a great result."

David Button makes his save Editor Bill Martin said it was the fans who would be left out by the decision

The club decided to restrict access for photographers at its games in the new season, meaning outlets would have to buy "official" pictures.

But Plymouth Argyle decided to release its own pictures, taken by its own official photographer, featuring its players in a bid not to let fans down.

Communications manager Rick Cowdery said other clubs had tried and failed to ban photographers.

"My feeling is that our fans deserve the chance to see our players in action and we were happy to make them available to the newspapers," he said.

"We were scrupulous in the pictures we took. Our motivation was to make sure we did the best for our club and our fans and supporters. Football is a fans' game."

Herald editor Bill Martin said restricting access for photographers was a "serious restriction" for press freedom.

"If professional sports clubs want to... restrict the press's access to reporting their matches, little by little the press are going to report their matches less and less," he said.

"The first people to suffer will be the fans... and the next people to suffer after that will be the sponsors.

"A decision like this also damages the image of football as a whole."

Mr Martin urged other newspapers who were likely to come across the same problem to "follow suit".

The newspaper is now looking at using the artist's work every week.

The BBC contacted Southampton FC several times but calls were not returned.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Go Marchin' On
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:33 pm 
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Southampton Football Club have revealed that club owner Markus Liebherr has died at the age of 62.

The German-born, Swiss businessman rescued the club from financial trouble just over a year ago, bringing the Saints out of administration and putting the club on a firmer financial footing.

"It is with deep regret and great sadness that the Club has to report that Markus Liebherr has passed away," a club statement read.

"His passing will come as an enormous shock to everyone but most particularly, of course, to his family and wide circle of friends. Our thoughts are with them at this very difficult time.

"Anyone who came to know Markus learned of his quick wit, love of football - most especially Saints football - and his unquenchable thirst for better knowledge of all things. Anyone who had the privilege of meeting Markus met a man who was quiet, unassuming, undemonstrative and fantastic fun to be with.

"The welcome that Markus was given when he arrived at the Saints just over a year ago was something that gave him a deep sense of pride and satisfaction. The progress of the Saints was always uppermost in his mind.

"To say he will be missed is an unmistakable understatement."

The club confirmed its intention to carry out Liebherr's long-term ambitions and plans for the club, all designed to bring an imminent return to the Premier League. The club will announced details of Liebherr's funeral as they are finalised.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Go Marchin' On
PostPosted: Mon Aug 30, 2010 1:06 pm 
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Southampton have sacked manager Alan Pardew - just two days after the team's 4-0 win at Bristol Rovers.

The npower League 1 side issued a statement claiming "it is essential to make changes to the first team management and coaching".

The 49-year-old led Saints to the Johnstone's Paint Trophy in March with a 4-1 win over Carlisle at Wembley and they started the season as firm favourites to achieve promotion to the Championship, although one win in their first three matches leaves them 14th in the table.

A statement from the club read: "Following a review of the current status in and around the first team, the club has decided that, to achieve its well known targets, it is essential to make changes to the first team management and coaching. "These targets for sustained and significant progress embrace both the first team and the football development and support centre as integrated, co-operative units."

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Go Marchin' On
PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:34 pm 
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Scunthorpe boss Nigel Adkins admits he has ambitions to progress his career further amid speculation linking him with the vacant managerial position at Southampton.

Adkins has won many admirers for his impressive work at Glanford Park, where he has spent the past four years in charge after a previous spell as the club's physiotherapist.

Bookies rate Adkins among the favourites to succeed Alan Pardew at Saints but the Iron manager says his main focus is Saturday's home clash with Bristol City.

Adkins told the Scunthorpe Telegraph: "I would like to think there is always going to be speculation because if there is, then it shows we are always going to be doing things positively and doing things right.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints Go Marchin' On
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:44 pm 
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Southampton withdraw offer for Nigel Adkins to be boss

Adkins joined Scunthorpe as a physio in 1996
Southampton have withdrawn their offer to Scunthorpe boss Nigel Adkins to become their new manager, according to Iron chairman Steve Wharton.

Warton said: "They gave him an ultimatum to resign from his position as Scunthorpe United manager.

"He was not prepared to do that until a compensation package had been agreed."

Adkins and assistant Andy Crosby were expected to join Saints but the League One club have denied that any ultimatum was given to the Iron boss.

A statement on Southampton's website said: "Contrary to some highly misleading comments published this morning, the club has made no ultimatums, has not made any approaches without appropriate permissions, and is fully aware that appropriate compensation payments become due where candidate managers are currently under contract.

"The club has acted in an entirely professional manner and will continue to do so."

The 45-year-old took over at Glanford Park in 2006 following the departure of Brian Laws to Sheffield Wednesday after a decade as the club's physiotherapist.

He was expected to replace Alan Pardew, who was sacked from his role in August.

Pardew was appointed as Saints boss in July 2009 but was dismissed from his role just three games into the current season.

Southampton currently lie 18th in League One having started as favourites to win the league.

Adkins became caretaker manager at Scunthorpe in November 2006 before being appointed in the full-time position a month later.

He guided the Iron to promotion to the Championship in 2007 and again in 2009 following their relegation in 2008.

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