Before the weekend, Southampton fans may have felt that there was little that could be done to make their season worse. But then reports emerged suggesting that Tony Pulis was on the lookout for a Premier League job.
The Sun on Sunday (17/11; page 67) reported at the weekend that Pulis had rejected the chance to return to management in the Championship as he was holding out for another chance in the top flight.
The report suggested that the Welshman sees himself coming in at a club such as West Ham or Southampton. From the outside, both Manuel Pellegrini and Ralph Hasenhuttl appear to be coming under pressure.
Hasenhuttl’s men are second-bottom in the Premier League. They have suffered six defeats in their last seven league games, and they have not won a top flight game since mid-September.
Nevertheless, the reaction to the reports of Pulis lurking have not gone down well amongst the Southampton fans on social media.
The former Middlesbrough boss has perhaps not got the credit that he deserves during his managerial career, particularly for the work that he did at Stoke City and Crystal Palace.
But it is arguably not difficult to understand why Southampton fans do not want Pulis. If any manager is going to take the Saints back towards the level they were at under the likes of Mauricio Pochettino and Ronald Koeman, it is Hasenhuttl – even if the club need to take some steps backwards first.
The style of football that Pulis’s teams tend to play has not always been easy on the eye. It has led to positive results. And you could understand why some fans may wonder if Southampton would stand a better chance of staying up this season if they appointed Pulis.
But you could also see why plenty of Southampton fans feel that they will be in a better position in the long-term if they stick by Hasenhuttl – even if they are relegated this year – than turn to Pulis and continue treading water for the next couple of campaigns.
Here is what some of the Saints fans make of the reports…
God help us! The grass isn’t always greener so let’s stick by RH, especially on game day!
— David Lapage (@DavidLapage) November 19, 2019
We’re not that bad ?…………..are we ?
— Jeff C (@jeffers249) November 18, 2019
— Melanie Hugh (@hugh_melanie) November 19, 2019
— shevvyt (@shevvyt) November 18, 2019
— Mark Cottle (@markcottle17) November 18, 2019
Oh FFS… just when you think it can’t get any more depressing! #SaintsFC
— DTagg64 (@DTagg64) November 18, 2019
— Daniel Heal (@daniel_heal) November 19, 2019