QPR’s Redknapp backs Pochettino to be ‘great success’ at Southampton

QPR's Harry Redknapp says he was surprised by Nigel Adkins's sacking but backs Mauricio Pochettino to be Southampton hit

nigel adkins
Nigel Adkins was in charge for two-and-a-half years at Southampton Back Page Images

nigel adkins

Harry Redknapp says Nigel Adkins did an amazing job at Southampton but is backing new boss Mauricio Pochettino to be a success at St Mary’s.

The Queens Park Rangers manager, who turns 66 on Saturday, will return to his former club hoping his birthday wish of three points is granted to help boost his side’s bid to beat relegation.

Southampton have recently undergone their own upheaval after Adkins was sacked and promptly replaced by former Espanyol coach Pochettino.

Redknapp was a big admirer of Adkins, who led the Saints to back-to-back promotions from League One to the top flight, but believes his 40-year-old replacement will be a hit at the south coast club ahead of Saturday’s match.

“He’s done well [Pochettino],” said Redknapp.

“I was a great fan of Nigel Adkins, who I’ve never met, but from seeing him on television and the job that he did was amazing.”

He added: “He did fantastic to get two promotions. But it’s up to the owners – they can do what they want.

“I’ve said that before when I left Tottenham. If they own the club then they can do what they want. It’s their decision, it’s their money.

“There’s nothing you can do about that. Nigel will come back stronger elsewhere and the new lad will make a big success of his time in England.

“He was a top player and he looks to be a bright manager.”

Pochettino, who turns 41 on Saturday, became the eighth foreign manager in the Premier League after succeeding Adkins.

Redknapp, who was sacked and replaced by Andre Villas-Boas Tottenham last summer, believes the influx of managers from abroad has undoubtedly improved the English top flight.

“There’s been some good foreign managers who’ve come in,” he added.

“They’ve been brilliant. If you look at the style of play and some of the football in the Premier League, a lot of it has been down to foreign coaches coming in.

“If you look at Swansea, it started six or seven years ago. You look at Gus Poyet at Brighton and Gianfranco Zola has done it at Watford this year.

“I’m sure he’ll be a big success and he’ll have a lot to offer the Premier League.”

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