It was very much a case of job done for Austrian manager Ralph Hasenhuttl as he arrived at St Mary’s Stadium as Mark Hughes replacement with the sole aim of keeping Southampton in the Premier League.
In the end, we escape the dreaded drop with a couple of games to spare and in the last few matches, it allowed him to slightly play as he made plans for the coming 2019/20 campaign.
With the gaffer already largely revealing his transfer approach and the type of players he would be targeting this summer as he looked to rebuild the club with a more ‘Southampton Way’ approach to things once again, he conducted a massive interview with outlet Sportbild and the whole piece makes a good read in fairness.
The bit that jumped out to me, other than him revealing he loves ‘Apple Crumble with custard’ was his words on transfer dealings once again.
“We want players who fit our philosophy: lots of speed, high pressing, gaming intelligence. The English football is very man-oriented, in the direction of the players are trained. It’s important that we get guys who can also defend ball-oriented. None of them should be older than 24 years. I have had good experiences with that in Leipzig. I’ve learned to develop young players and see that you can succeed with them.”
I would think that definitely helps us rule out some of the transfer speculation doing the rounds, but with fans already knowing that Hasenhuttl wanted significant improvement next season, his minimum aim for the year is top half of the table.
“For the first half year, we first wanted to bring back the feeling of being back. I think we have managed to make people positive for the club again. Next season, we want to climb as far as we can. If we keep our point cut, we can land at 10th place.”
After the last few years we’ve had at the club tenth place would be an absolute dream.