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Saints supremo Nicola Cortese demands progression

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Southampton chairman Nicola Cortese has urged the club to continue their progression of the last five years, and believes he was still right to replace former manager Nigel Adkins.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Cortese outlined his tough reception as he entered English football as an Italian banker with no experience of running professional sports clubs. 

Since his arrival in 2009, the Italian's management of the Southampton ship has often divided opinion, but results have proved hard to argue against.

A meteoric rise from administration and being rooted to the bottom of the League One table due to a points deduction saw Southampton climb to the heavy heights of Premier League football, a stage they had not expereinced since relegation in 2005.

But Cortese does not want to repeat the past. Nor does he want to follow the lead of others. 

The Saints supremo is targeting success, and success bred from the club's own philosophies - driven from the top by himself.

"I want to do things differently and when that happens it creates suspicion, but I like to challenge the traditional views of English football," Cortese said.

"I am demanding, but I demand a lot from myself. I want to be an example to my staff and I don't tolerate anyone standing still."

Speaking on the subject of the highly controversial decision to sack Adkins, which had sparked outrage in the footballing fraternity, Cortese was assured and still believes the decision to have been the correct one.

"The decision appears ruthless, but it was the right thing to do," he told the Daily Mail. 

"It seems cold, but I do everything in order to progress. I don't want to lose five matches in a row before I sack the manager - I do it before that happens."

Current incumbent Mauricio Pochettino is Cortese's third manager in five years, as the former Espanyol boss prepares for his first full season as Southampton manager. 

He replaced Nigel Adkins in January 2013, and quickly set about winning admirers for his pressing style and attractive, attacking philosophy.

It's a philosophy that has been at the heart of the club for some time now, 'The Southampton Way', as Cortese likes to call it. 

"People automatically say, "You have to play like this in League One" or "This is the way to play in the Championship" and I would say, "Why?"

"I want to  create a fantastic working environment - the Southampton way - for the 200 staff at the club. Four years after I arrived I have earned some respect because maybe my decisions were not so bad," he added.

Cortese has often been criticised for lacking the sentimentality that many fans regard so highly in football, having had public spats with former players and fellow chairmen. 

It is Cortese's business-like approach however, that has led to the rapid progression witnessed by all on the south coast.

"When I arrived the staff were used to meetings to tell them they weren't being paid. I'm first in the office at 7am and last to leave at 7pm. 

"I'm not busy worrying what people think about me."

Perhaps it is Cortese's tunnel-vision on driving Southampton to their highest potential that ruffles so many feathers, he has no time for pandering to the masses, or suffering fools gladly.

This summer has been a good one so far for Cortese, Pochettino and fans alike of the Saints. 

The club moved quickly to capture Dejan Lovren from Olympique Lyonnais, before adding the impressive and highly-coveted Victor Wanyama to their ranks.

Perhaps most importantly of all, Cortese ensured that Luke Shaw remained at the club. 

The graduate of the famous Southampton academy had been touted with moves to footballing elite such as Chelsea and Manchester United.

Perhaps this is the greatest demonstration of Cortese's ambition to-date, as he seeks to transform the perception of the previously perennial top-flight strugglers.

 

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Premier League
Southampton
Football

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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