Southampton FC Give Manager Mark Hughes a Three Year Extension

mark hughes

Manager Mark Hughes was rewarded today, via a three contract extension, for saving Southampton FC from relegation. The south coast club was dangerously residing in the drop zone until very late in the season, causing all kinds of anxiety for the team and their supporters.

In the end though, Hughes led Saints to a 17th place finish, the final safety spot, as they finished the season with 36 points, three ahead of now relegated Swansea City. Thus, Southampton FC announce a new deal for their 54-year-old boss.

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FA Cup Semifinal Chelsea vs Southampton: Suspension/Injury Report

southampton

Chelsea and Southampton will tangle for the second weekend in a row, and this time the stakes are very different. Saints are running out of time and chances to secure Premier League safety, while Chelsea are close to seeing the sun set on their top four finish hopes. Both however, can still acquire a trophy this season, if they win here and then beat the Manchester United-Tottenham Hotspur winner in the final.

Let’s look at the availability situation for both sides.

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Chelsea and Southampton FC Starting XI Predictions (FA Cup Semifinal)

wembley-stadium

Chelsea and Southampton will clash for the second time in just eight days when the two sides meet on Sunday in Wembley Stadium for an FA Cup semifinal clash. The Blues came back from a 1-0 halftime deficit to beat the Saints 3-2 this past Saturday at the St. Mary’s. Chelsea leads the all time series between the two clubs 43-30, with 28 draws.

This will be the last chance for both clubs to get their first trophy of the season, so expect this clash to be very competitive. Let’s look at who both sides could field in their respective first teams.

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Antonio Conte Angered By Chelsea’s Lack of Desire in First Half

antonio conte

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte admits he was angered and disappointed by his side’s lack of “desire” and “will to fight” in the first half, but also pleased by their reaction in the second half. Reigning Premier League champions Chelsea fell behind 2-0 to Southampton, a very proud club that is having an awful season, and in serious peril of being relegated.

The Blues got a double from striker Olivier Giroud, who moved from rival Arsenal in January, and essentially completed the final phase of his move to Stamford Bridge today. Chelsea got a third goal from Eden Hazard, and went on to win 3-2. They still remain all but eliminated from the top four race, but at least they showed signs of a team, in the second half at least, fighting for something substantial.

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Liverpool FC Top Premier League Agent Fee Spending at £26.8m

british pounds

For the first time ever, Premier League clubs in total spent more than £200 million on agent fees. Leading the way to the £211,011,187 mark was Liverpool Football Club, at just shy of £26.8 million. The Football Association released the numbers today which cover the period of Feb. 1 2017 to Jan. 31 2018, taking in the last two transfer windows.

The reigning league champions, Chelsea, were second followed by this year’s champions-in-waiting Manchester City. Coming in fourth was Manchester United, a.k.a. Mino Raiola FC.

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United, Chelsea, Tottenham, Southampton Receive FA Cup Draws

fa cup

Chelsea was able to finish off Leicester City 2-1 in extra time tonight, and with that result, complete the quarterfinal round of the FA Cup. Once the Sunday evening clash between the sides that comprise the last three Premier League title winners was complete, the FA Cup semi-final draw was held.

The results: Manchester United will face Tottenham, and Chelsea were drawn against Southampton.

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Southampton FC Officially Name Mark Hughes New Manager

mark hughes

That didn’t take very long at all. Mark Hughes was officially named the new Southampton FC Manager minutes ago, via press release. The announcement of the Welshman’s appointment comes just two days after they officially sacked Mauricio Pellegrino.

“Hughes has agreed a contract with the club until the end of the season and will take training at the club’s Staplewood Campus for the first time on Thursday,” the statement reads.

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Mauricio Pellegrino Sacked by Southampton After Just Nine Months

 

southampton

It’s safe to say that the Mauricio Pellegrino experiment at Southampton FC  didn’t work out too well. The club announced via a press release tonight that Pellegrino, hired this past June on a three year deal as the successor to Claude Puel, is already out of a job. The club also sacked two of Pellegrino’s assistants.

It’s understandable though given how Saints now find themselves in serious peril of being relegated. The south coast club is currently just a point and one place above the drop zone.

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FA Cup Draws: Chelsea, United, City and Tottenham Avoid Each Other

fa cup

In the FA Cup quarterfinal draws, all the big clubs will avoid each other- surprising no one! There are four members of the Premier League big six left alive in the competition: Manchester United, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea. The Red Devils and Blues have already had (and obviously won) their fifth round ties to advance to the round of eight.

Of the ten clubs remaining in the competition, seven are from the Premier League. Looking ahead at the next round of draws, the standout tie seems to be Chelsea vs Leicester City; a match-up of the last three league champions.

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Jurgen Klopp Feels Van Dijk Handled Hostile Reception Well

jurgen klopp

Virgil van Dijk, the man crowned the world’s most expensive defender in history this past January, was met with a strong chorus of boos as he made his first return to St. Mary’s since he made his £75 million move from Southampton to Liverpool. VVD is thought to have forced through his move from the south coast club to Anfield, and the very protracted transfer saga certainly had its share of ugly moments.

With Saints now struggling to avoid relegation, and Liverpool battling Manchester United for second place, many Southampton supporters have vitriol for Van Dijk. Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp thinks that the Dutchman handled the jeering quite well.

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Virgil van Dijk Enjoys Southampton Booing, Man United Loss

virgil van dijk

“I can’t believe, today was a good day,” American urban poet O’Shea Jackson (Ice Cube) famously told us in the early 1990s. Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk shared the same sentiment about his homecoming to Southampton yesterday; and in regards to another Sunday Premier League result.

Van Dijk moved from Southampton to Liverpool in the January transfer window, and in doing so, moved up from a team in the relegation zone to one chasing Manchester United for second place. VVD is thought to have forced through his move from St. Mary’s to Anfield, and the contentious manner in which the protracted transfer saga transpired, elicited massive boos from Saints supporters during the Reds 2-0 away win.  [Read more…]

Jurgen Klopp Says Adam Lallana Could See Some Minutes vs Southampton

adam lallana

The latest Adam Lallana comeback has obviously seen some rough patches. The 29-year-old Liverpool man strangled an opponent during his convalescence appearance with the U23s against Tottenham Hotspur; and the video of the incident went viral all over the world.

The 2017-18 campaign has definitely been a very difficult one for Lallana. A thigh issue suffered in the preseason forced him to miss the first four months of the season. After making his first appearance of the season November 25, he saw some limited action over the course of seven appearances, but the muscular injury flared up again.

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