Saturday 28 April 2012

Saints promoted to Premier League!

With today’s 4-0 win against Coventry at home in St. Mary’s Stadium, Southampton Football Club (the “Saints”) have been promoted back to the Premier League, after seven years in the English footballing “wilderness”. Southampton were relegated from the Premier League in May 2005, ending twenty-seven successive seasons of top-division football (the “First Division”, and then the “Premier League”).

The financial and administrative mess that led to the collapse of the club’s fortunes continued, as Saints were relegated to League One (the third division) at the end of the 2008-2009 season. On 23 April 2009, Southampton received a ten-point deduction, following their parent company going into administration. This deduction led to the second relegation – into League One. 

Through May and June of 2009 Southampton were in danger of going bankrupt and folding as a football club, but they were bought by Swiss industrial magnate Markus Liebherr. Liebherr eliminated all the club’s debts and hired Swiss businessman, Nicola Cortese, as the new CEO of the club.

Rickie Lambert - 27 league goals this season
 In July 2009, Cortese brought in Alan Pardew as manager. He proved to be an astute signer of players – bringing in Rickie Lambert, Dean Hamond, Radhi Jaïdi, Graeme Murty, Dan Harding, David Connolly, Michail Antonio, Papa Waigo, Lee Barnard, José Fonte, Danny Seaborne, Jon Otsemobor, and Jason Puncheon. 

In August 2010, Pardew was fired and Cortese signed Nigel Adkins as manager – joining Saints from Scunthorpe United. Adkins proved to be an excellent man-manager and he quickly built a tremendous team-spirit at the club – emphasizing the fact that successful clubs are built on a strong squad working towards a common goal, rather than relying on a few individuals. He consolidated the team around the squad that Pardew had assembled and brought in some key players of his own. 

Adam Lallana - local boy and talented midfielder
Behind the scenes, Cortese completely re-built the club’s business ethos. His no-nonsense, principled approach worked quickly. The chaos and dissension of the Rupert Lowe era was gone. Cortese announced a five-year plan to get the club back to the Premier League. And they’ve done it in three seasons – back-to-back promotions in the last two seasons. 

So, time to celebrate. Well done Saints! 

“Oh, when the Saints go marching in …”


  1. Should be a fun year next year! ...and this post only 6 paragraphs?--come on Clive--you're slacking!

  2. Well done, Saints. Now we'll be able to watch you on MOTD every weekend.

  3. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!! We've done it!!!!!!!!!!!!!