Monday 24 October 2016

Frenchman Puel takes over as new Saints boss from Koeman

Claude Puel. Picture credit: Martin Rickett/PA Wire.
Claude Puel. Picture credit: Martin Rickett/PA Wire.

Former Nice coach Claude Puel has been named as Southampton manager on a three-year contract in succession to Ronald Koeman.

The 54-year-old Frenchman was also in charge at Monaco, Lille and Olympique Lyon, whom he led to the Champions league semis in 2010, but has never worked outside France.

"It was an easy decision to make," Puel said. "I thought of all the possibilities at this club, the very good players, good persons."

Puel will be joined at St Mary's by former Aston Villa caretaker manager Eric Black, who has been appointed assistant manager and Frenchman Pascal Plancque who is assistant coach.

Puel's appointment will be seen as a gamble for the Saints who have appointed 15 managers in the past 16 years.

Southampton, who have qualified for the Europa League group stages, said they were impressed by Puel's track record in developing young talent.

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