Southampton’s head of performance analysis, Natasha Patel, has departed the club after nearly eight years with the Premier League side to join the New York Red Bulls.
The MLS franchise confirmed on their official website that Patel had joined the New Jersey-based club after nearly a decade on the south coast with the Saints, where she began her footballing as an analysist before climbing to the role of ‘head of performance’.
Patel said about her move from Southampton to the Red Bulls: “I am extremely delighted to join the New York Red Bulls family, a club with strong values and a clear vision to develop players and continue to be successful in MLS.”
And the Red Bulls sporting director, Denis Hamlett, was full of glowing praise for his new employee, with the former Chicago Fire manager saying: “We are excited to have Natasha join us. Her work at Southampton was very impressive, from first-team preparation to programs and processes she implemented behind the scenes to strengthen the club’s use of analytics to drive performance.”
The former head of performance analysis is the second figure from Southampton to leave the club for American this season, with academy product Josh Sims also making the trip across the Atlantic to join the MLS side on loan for the 2019 season.
Patel is also the second major Southampton backroom staff member to depart the club in just two months, with Ralph Hasenhuttl losing his number two, Danny Rohl, to Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich after the Saints assistant manager left the Premier League side as reported by The Southern Daily Echo.
The departure of key figures, including the reported farewell of director of football operations Ross Wilson as per The Southern Daily Echo, is a seemingly clear indicator that the Saints are undergoing massive change in every factor of the club and that there could be more big names heading out the exit door soon.