Southampton legend Matt Le Tissier believes former teammate Mark Hughes is the right choice for Saints’ chances to survive this season’s Premier League relegation dogfight this season.
The club announced the appointment of ex-Stoke City boss Hughes late last night and Le God believes Hughes’ extensive knowledge of English football could make the difference for Southampton.
Speaking to Sky Sports [H/T Reuters], where he now serves as a football pundit, Le Tissier said “The situation we are in is not a great one and we don’t need a manager coming in who doesn’t know the players, doesn’t know the league. So Mark would seem to be with the club’s way of thinking.
“He obviously did not have a great season at Stoke this year but as far as I can remember I think it was the first time he had a team really struggling against relegation.
“He’s managed some big teams. He has a wealth of experience of the game... but I’ll keep my fingers crossed he can keep us up this season first and foremost, then get us to kick on again next season.”
From 1998 to 2000, Hughes spent two seasons at Saints as he wound down his playing career before becoming Wales manager - almost leading his country to Euro 2004 but for a narrow 1-0 aggregate loss to Russia in the playoffs.
More recently, Hughes was managing Stoke and lead the Potters to three consecutive ninth-place league finishes from the 2013-14 season - the club’s highest position since 1975.
However, Hughes was relieved of his duties at the club in January after an FA Cup third-round loss to League Two Coventry City and a poor first half of the season landing themselves in the same relegation battle Saints are in.