Odds suggest Southampton can rest easy over managerial upheaval

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Southampton’s summers follow a familiar pattern. After a credible campaign, their best performers, either on the pitch or in the dugout, get tapped up by bigger clubs.

So to see manager Ronald Koeman being linked with a switch to Arsenal this summer shouldn’t come as too much of a shock on the south coast.

The Dutchman is on course to record the Saints’ third consecutive top-10 Premier League finish and second under his watch. Sat just two points behind West Ham, the former Eredivisie tactician could yet land in the top six.

For a club in just their fourth season back in the big time, those results are impressive. They are made all the more so when the turnover of staff and players since winning promotion is considered.

Having made a habit of maintaining their standards despite the upheaval, news that Koeman is wanted at the Emirates won’t panic the St Mary’s outfit too much.

That ability to stay afloat forms the crux of their serenity, the move also widely depends on the obstinate Frenchman leaving his post in the first place.

Arsene Wenger’s longevity in north London and steadfast refusal to quit play a big part in Ladbrokes making Koeman a distant 12/1 chance to be Arsenal boss on the first day of next season.

Despite that, pressure on Wenger quitting the club he has managed for the last 20 years is increasing, as the Gunners sit and watch two unlikely title contenders battle it out for the league.

Leicester and Tottenham have both capitalised on the failings of the top-flight’s usual contenders, leaving a frustrated Arsenal fan base questioning their long-serving leader once again.

Wenger only has a year left on his Emirates contract, which is the same amount of time Koeman has left at Southampton, but the volume on calls for the three-time Premier League winner to cut that deal short are increasing.

Should the Frenchman bow to them then perhaps those odds about Koeman taking over may crash, but until then there appears little to worry about.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.