Adkins sacking is lunacy but Saints must heed warning from Chelsea fans' abuse
James Coney, Money Mail Editor
15:56 GMT, 18 January 2013
17:43 GMT, 18 January 2013
You’d find it hard to find one
football fan, let alone any who support Southampton, who does not
believe the sacking of Nigel Adkins is complete madness.
had a terrible first few games back in the top flight. But even though
they lost eight in 10 matches there were few fans who lost confidence Adkins would get the team out of trouble.
the faith was rewarded. Saints have lost two in just 12 games,
including draws at Chelsea and Stoke and at home to Arsenal.
Ruthless: Nigel Adkins was sacked by Southampton despite consecutive promotions and improved form
Saint marching in: Former Espanyol manager Mauricio Pochettino is the shock appointment at St Mary's
Even though the side are just above the relegation places, there are few who don’t believe the only way is up.
The players clearly respect Adkins and the fans adore him.
club chairman Nicola Cortese has sacked the manager of a team, who just
two days drew, and almost beat, the champions of Europe.
has been replaced with a man few will have heard of, and by all
accounts speaks little English. His managerial career hardly sparkles –
getting Espanyol a couple of mid-table finishes before being sacked when
they were at the foot of La Liga.
Fighting spirit: Rickie Lambert (second left) helped the Saints hold Chelsea to a 2-2 draw just two days ago
Read all the news of an unbelievable day on the south coast in MailOnline:
Southampton SACK Adkins and replace him with Pochettino just two days after drawing away at European champions Chelsea
Meet the man Southampton hope will keep them up… Pochettino unveiled but he can't speak English and admits he has been researching the Saints 'for several weeks'!
From sinner to Saint: Watch Southampton boss Pochettino foul Owen in the box
what is going through the head of every Saints fan will be this: Please
don’t let this be the start of another managerial merry-go-round.
Saints had 12 managers in eight years
before being relegated. Many of these were hopeless, some went on to
But sacking one who had gained two promotions in
consecutive seasons and had bought and built a talented team which
players bright attractive football seems like lunacy.
was at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night. Three times the travelling
support sung Adkins’ name – even when the side were trailing 2-0 at half
By contrast I
was struck by the horrible atmosphere among the Chelsea fans who despise
the sacking of their former manager. The abuse and animosity is having a
detrimental effect on the team’s home performances.
It’s a warning Saints supporters should heed.
I suspect there will now be the same level of anger towards the chairman by the Saints fans.
if that starts affecting performances then a side which was slowly
climbing the table could quickly fall back in to trouble.
First day: Pochettino gives his first press conference on Friday, ahead of Saints' game with Everton on Monday