Chris Ison/PA Wire Mauricio Pochettino celebrates Danny Osvaldo's goal against Manchester City.
backing down

Pochettino refuses to follow chairman out Southampton door

The Argentinean said it would not make sense for him to leave St Mary’s now.

SOUTHAMPTON MANAGER MAURICIO POCHETTINO has rowed back on a vow he made last season to follow Nicola Cortese out the door if the chairman was axed.

Cortese ended his four-year involvement with the Premiership club yesterday and there was much speculation if former Argentina international Pochettino would hold true to his words. Asked last May if he would stay on with the club if Cortese left, he declared, “Of course not.”

Today, Pochettino confirmed he would be staying at St Mary’s and explained the reasoning behind his decision. He took time out to pay gratitude to Cortese, who was subjected to much criticism for installing him in place of fan-favourite Nigel Adkins.

Pochettino commented, “It was a completely different situation eight months ago; I was speaking at the end of my first season. I did say then I would leave; now is different [as] we are in the middle of process.” The manager revealed that Cortese backed his decision to stay with Southampton and asked that the club get a league win away to Sunderland on Saturday.

“When [Cortese] offered me a contract he said be 100% professional always regardless of the situation. He is a stand out guy… His departure surprised me, I knew nothing off it. It is distracting but we are professional but also human. It is a sad blow,” Pochettino added. “I spoke to [Southampton owner] Katharina Liebherr] for five minutes and she transmitted to me her full trust and to the staff

The Argentinean said he was unaware of any bids for left-back Luke Shaw but added that, in his opinion, none of his players are for sale.

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