Premier League strugglers Southampton have secured new leadership on the St. Mary’s touchline after Saints completed a deal for Luton Town boss Nathan Jones.
The south coast club officially parted ways with Ralph Hasenhüttl two days ago after what has been yet another season of frustration near the bottom of the table, with Jones having been immediately earmarked by the club as the front-running candidate when they opened dialogue with Luton to request permission to speak to the Hatters headmaster.
Daily Telegraph midlands football reporter John Percy tweeted earlier that Saints were close to agreeing on Jones’ appointment, which would cost the club over £4m in compensatory fees given the fact that Jones had only relatively recently signed fresh terms with the club. Chris Cohen and Alan Sheehan are expected to follow him and join as part of the new coaching team on the south coast.
Jones was spotted in attendance at Southampton’s Carabao Cup clash tonight at home against visiting Sheffield Wednesday, with the new boss, unfortunately, witnessing his new employers 1-0 down late in the first half at the time of writing.
The 49-year-old does have a talented young core to try to get a tune out of once he officially takes up his new post after Saints have focused on the future during recent transfer windows in deals that have seen them prize prospects from Premier League academies while also scouring the continent for affordable talent.
Dating back to the summer of 2020, Saints have secured deals for Kyle Walker-Peters, Mohammed Salisu, Ibrahima Diallo, Tino Livramento, Gavin Bazunu, Sékou Mara, Roméo Lavia, Armel Bella-Kotchap, Juan Larios, Samuel Edozie, and a cadre of more experienced and prime-aged talent in the hope so building a sustainable senior setup that could not only challenge the middle-tier of the Premier League but could also fetch substantial profits if any sales are required.
In Jones, Saints have a new manager whom many fans can feel a sense of optimism about after two successful stints at Kenilworth Road which culminated in an impressive sixth-place finish last season and passage into the promotion playoff before losing to Huddersfield Town in the semi-finals.
With the club having nowhere to go but up, Jones has a big task ahead of him but has already passed with flying colors under more strenuous circumstances.