Groundhog day – another ransacking at St. Mary’s Stadium is about to take place, and for the second time in three years, the boss has been nicked.
While many Saints fans will now be used to the unrelenting repetition of star players and managers leaving at the end of every season, the departure of Ronald Koeman to Everton has left a bitter taste in many mouths on the South Coast.
With Southampton finishing sixth and ready for Europa League football, and Everton finishing eleventh and in need of serious improvement, it seems that money talks when it comes to managers choosing their next destination.
Still, the Saints have proved particularly astute in player and coach recruitment and this summer should be no different.
Here are the FIVE men that Southampton should consider as manager…
In a bizarre twist of fate, the man who was originally favourite for the Everton job could find himself at the very place that Ronald Koeman departed to head to Goodison Park.
If Frank De Boer is selected to continue the Dutch revolution at St. Mary’s, he would bring with him a wealth of experience and tactical nous, both as a player and manager.
However, the pressure of the Eredivisie and Ajax is markedly different to the pressure at Southampton and the Premier League, something that may truly test De Boer’s acumen, should he take the role.
The current favourite with the bookies, Eddie Howe and his ever-growing reputation could be set for St. Mary’s.
It is no wonder the 38-year-old is a contender for the job at Southampton. A stellar season with Bournemouth who, with an incomparably long injury list and lack of top flight experience, managed to comfortably avoid the drop.
The test for Howe if he were to take the Saints hot seat would be dealing with larger egos, a larger budget and intense pressure to perform from his very first day.
While Manuel Pellegrini’s time at Manchester City came to a stuttering conclusion, the Chilean still delivered a Premier League trophy and the club’s best ever Champions League campaign in his three year tenure.
Pellegrini has reiterated his desire to continue management in England and Southampton could be the perfect opportunity for him. A chance to play his style of football without the enormous weight of expectation, plus Europa League games in the calendar, don’t be surprised to see Pellegrini announce his willingness to take the job.
It has been a tough few years for David Moyes. Since leaving the comfort of Goodison Park, his home for more than a decade, the Scotsman endured a miserable season at Manchester United and a disappointing stint in Spain with Real Sociedad.
However, Southampton may be the ideal destination for Moyes. A family club who like to play football and are battling for European places on a consistent basis will bring the best out of the 53-year old.
Many were left scratching their heads as to the decision of Watford to sack Quique Flores, especially after guiding his team to safety in their first season back in the top flight.
However, Flores’ reputation is hardly tarnished, in fact his untimely sacking has seen his stock rise even further and he is now an outside bet for the Southampton job.
While may Saints fans may want to look for a more prestigious manager to take the helm at St Mary’s, Flores’ astute man management and impressive tactical application could be a breath of fresh air on the South Coast.