Southampton bound? | Nathan Jones in pole position to take up the vacancy at St. Mary’s Stadium

Saints finally parted ways with Austrian manager Ralph Hasenhüttl in the wake of their heavy 4-1 defeat at home against Newcastle United at the weekend

The vacancy at Southampton may not remain in the classified section long as reports have surfaced linking the St. Mary’s outfit with interest in Luton Town boss Nathan Jones.

In a statement on Luton’s official website, the Kenilworth Road outfit may have popular shoes to fill after the Hatters confirmed to its supporters that Saints have requested to open discussions with Jones (49) to be the successor to Ralph Hasenhüttl at the south coast club after Southampton officially parted ways with the Austrian just one month shy of reaching four years in charge.

“We would like to place on record that the Premier League club has approached the board in the correct manner, for which we are grateful, and that the whole situation is extremely amicable with Southampton and with Nathan.”

“We would also like to urge all supporters traveling to Stoke to show him and the team your support on what we hope will be yet another memorable away day.”

“As a club, we will not be making any further comment until the process is complete.”

Jones has spent two highly-successful spells in Bedfordshire after hanging up his boots in 2021, first between January 2016 and January 19 where he racked up an impressive 51.2% win rate across 170 matches in charge (87-46-37) before moving to Stoke City during the middle of the 2018-19 season where he would ultimately hit a wall at Bet365 Stadium, only crafting six wins in 38 matches at the helm before being relieved of command in November 2019.

He would ultimately return to Luton in May of 2020 where he found his footing once again, leading the club to 54 wins in 132 matches to date.

Luton finished 12th in the Championship in his first year back at the club before embarking on a fantastic 2021-22 campaign that saw them place 6th and reach the promotion playoff before losing in the semi-finals to Huddersfield Town 2-1 on aggregate, and at the time of writing, the club sit 8th and looking for another push into the top six.

The loss of Jones would no doubt prove a hammer blow for the club’s clear progression on the pitch, but Saints could potentially be gaining a diamond in the rough as their own project looks to finally make strides in a positive direction.

Andrew Thompson

US-based Football writer. German football guru with a wealth of experience in youth development and analysis. Data aficionado. Happily championing the notion that Americans have a knowledgeable voice in the beautiful game.

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