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Cortese resignation leaves Pochettino’s Saints future in balance

| 16.01.2014

As Mauricio Pochettino approaches his first anniversary of being appointed Southampton manager, nobody can argue with the splendid job he’s done in solidifying the club as a stable Premier League outfit.

Taking over from Nigel Adkins after the former physio’s surprise sacking last season, the Argentine guided Saints to safety in the second half of the 2012/13 campaign, before enjoying a blossoming start to the current term that currently sees the club sit in ninth place.

It’s therefore natural that fans of the south coast club would fear a plummet in fortunes should the former Espanyol man leave the club, but unfortunately that now looks a distinct possibility.

Pochettino shocked the St Mary’s faithful last summer by declaring he’d have no hesitation of walking away from Southampton should close friend, and club chairman Nicola Cortese vacate his position and that is now reportedly exactly what’s happened.

Cortese, who has overseen the club’s rise from League One to the top-flight, has been at loggerheads with the club’s owner, Katharina Liebherr, for some time over a mismatch in the pair’s ambitions for Southampton’s future as well as the status of his own contract.

But, with reports suggesting the Italian chairman has finally thrown in the towel, the odds on Pochettino to be the next manager to leave have taken a tumble.

Ladbrokes are currently 2/1 that the 41-year-old is the next Premier League boss to leave his job, with only Norwich’s Chris Hughton, at 4/5, ahead of him in the betting.

Southampton have won just two of their last ten league matches, seeing them slump out of the top six in the table and with that slip in form, losing their inspirational manager is the last thing the club need.

Should Pochettino walk, then it’s hard to see Saints turning around that unwanted form anytime soon.

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.