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Monday 10 December 2018

New faces like Hasenhuttl good for game

Ralph Hasenhuttl, the new Southampton boss, watches the Spurs game
Ralph Hasenhuttl, the new Southampton boss, watches the Spurs game

The Premier League now doesn't have the merry-go-round of managers that you had before - and that's a good thing for clubs and for the game.

Mark Hughes lost his job with Southampton this week, but the club didn't look to one of the usual names, instead they went to Germany for an Austrian coach, Ralph Hasenhuttl.

There was a spell there where you had Alan Pardew, Sam Allardyce and these people who got each other's job all the time, a job came up every couple of months and Big Sam would be in the frame.

But clubs now are more proactive and have look at their options. I think Southampton saw how Leipzig had improved as a team under Hasenhuttl and while they did have money to spend, a lot of it was done to the coach and his ideas. Everyone is trying to find the next innovation in football and now, that seems to mean a foreign coach. So it adds to the league as you have new styles, new ideas, it's better to watch.

As a player dealing with a new manager you have to be open. No one likes change, but if you give a new manager a chance, you will improve as a player.

A lot depends on the first speech to the squad. If the manager comes in and says 'I'm the best manager in the world' you instantly think 'who is this guy?' but you have to give it time.

I had Mark Hughes as my manager at Manchester City and he was good, though he was very quiet, he didn't speak much around the place. Tactically he was very aware, he set his teams out well, but I think being sacked by Man City knocked his confidence as he hasn't progressed since then, whereas when he came to City, people spoke about him being the next top manager.

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