So another busy week or so in the Premier League managerial merry-go-round has seen Southampton appoint Claude Puel’s successor in the shape of Mauricio Pellegrino.
But why did Southampton opt for the relatively unknown 45-year-old, whose CV is pretty weak? Well it is hard to merely cite fashionable trends at The Saints – who have a good track record in their recent managerial appointments.
After axing Nigel Adkins in January 2013 they nailed it when appointing Mauricio Pochettino – he had been in charge at lowly Espanyol and on the fact of it his results looked OK but nothing special – but he was already establishing himself with his style and system.
He transformed Southampton and soon was lured to Spurs. Ronald Koeman followed before he too was on his way to bigger things with Everton.
Well respected French coach Claude Puel followed and although results looked fine, the fans were not happy and the club responded and parted company.
Now Pellegrino has come in. His last role was by far his best to date, guiding unfancied Alaves to a mid-table finish in La Liga – before that he had a failed spell with Valencia and some stints in Argentina.
So why has Pellegrino got the job? Well clearly he has a good agent, of that there is no doubt,
Right place at right time? Yes little doubt. Southampton clearly did not consider a British coach – for example look at Sean Dyche at Burnley, every bit as impressive as what Pellegrino did at Alaves, but he was not even in the mix.
Many experts claim Pellegrino is a good appointment – for instance the ubiquitous Guillem Balague feels he is a great appointment – but when was the last time he was negative about anyone Hispanic coming to England, either in a managerial role or transfer related?
I just don’t see how, from his CV, Pellegrino warrants the role – but that is not to say he will not be a good appointment, given Southampton’s record, I am sure he will prove to be a more than decent appointment….I just wish some British talent would get the same chance.
And of course this is not a swipe at Southampton, the same could be said of Crystal Palace – although many would point to the fact that Frank De Boer’s CV is somewhat more impressive – and I would not argue and to be fair to The Eagles, they have never backed away from a British appointment.
So when will this fashion change? Who knows – I guess the David Moyes factor is still impacting on clubs in the Premier League and their thinking- arguably the biggest club in the world went British and look what happened? They are still recovering now years later.
I guess we need a big British breakthrough with someone like Eddie Howe to get a shot at a ‘big’ club and the likes of Dyche to keep plugging away until that point, whilst we may be disheartened by an appointment like Pellegrino – it is hard to argue against it.