The fifth manager of the season has been sacked, and we’re only at the end of August. Following Saturday’s 4-0 victory for Southampton at Bristol Rovers it was announced today that Alan Pardew, his assistant Wally Downes and goalkeeping coach Stuart Murdoch has all been “relieved of their duties with immediate effect”.
Three matches into the season this seems an extraordinary action from club chairman Cortese, who wants automatic promotion this season. It’s not been the best start of the season but 4 points from 3 matches is no disaster, especially after the last result.
The press release announcing Pardew’s dismissal stated: “We recognise that frequent changes to the football management are unlikely to assist in the winning of trophies and promotions.” The suggestion is that Cortese, who arrived at the club shortly after Pardew’s appointment, is hopeful of making a long-term appointment. On the one hand, Southampton is an extremely attractive proposition for a prospective manager – a financially stable club with a good squad, a sound infrastructure and a large fanbase. But the fact that Pardew has been sacked so early in the season might make a prospective new manager think twice before joining them.
Southampton is in a mess, one can only hope that Cortese has a miracle answer because it looks pretty gloomy for them at the moment.