The Southampton fans in the Transfer Tavern were thrilled on Monday evening after hearing the news that Mauricio Pellegrino had been sacked as manager of the club following an extremely unsuccessful stint on the south-coast.
The resident Saints propping up our bar in the tavern had been lamenting their side’s form and Pellegrino’s incompetency for a period of months prior to his dismissal earlier this week, and although they are pleased with the decision, they are wondering what took the club so long to send him packing. In this day and age it is rare to see a manager be given an opportunity to turn things around after a long period of decline, but Pellegrino ultimately failed to repay the faith shown in him by the club’s hierarchy.
Of course, not all of Southampton’s problems can be pinned on Pellegrino, as they players have to take responsibility for their own lacklustre displays throughout the season. Plenty of individuals in the red and white stripes of Southampton have been guilty of falling below the standard expected of them so far this season, especially Dusan Tadic (valued at £13.5 million by Transfermarkt) who is normally one of the clubs brightest attacking players.
Tadic has never been the type to top the statistics charts with goals and asssits, but he has consistently provided a source of creativity and attacking inspiration throughout his Southampton career so far, until now. The 29-year-old is arguably the Saints most experienced creative outlet in midfield, but his performances have failed to justify that notion this season.
Pellegrino’s inability to install a recognisable tactical approach into his side undoubtedly stifled Tadic’s creative spark during his spell at the club, as it did with plenty of other Southampton players. However, that excuse no longer stands for the Serbian international, and the presence of a new face at the club should encourage him to rediscover his best form whilst he attempts to convince his new manager that he is still worthy of a starting berth.
Southampton have a massive few weeks in-front of them in their bid to avoid the drop this season, and Tadic’s displays could make or break their success in this regard, so he must forget about his struggle under Pellegrino and step up to the task during their final 8 fixtures.