Mark Hughes the favourite for Southampton job after Mauricio Pellegrino is sacked

Southampton manager Mauricio Pellegrino on the touch line during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Southampton at St. James Park

Pellegrino, a former Argentina global, secured the equivalent of 0.93 points per game, the third-worst tally of any Southampton manager in the Premier League.

But Southampton's football has been just as bad under Pellegrino and only one team, rock-bottom West Brom, have won less games than the five Saints have managed this term.

He eventually left the club in the summer, supposedly to retire, but ended his self imposed retirement to help Everton, who were flirting with the relegation zone, back in November of this season.

Hughes has taken charge of almost 450 Premier League matches for Blackburn, Manchester City, Fulham, QPR and Stoke.

The final straw for the Saints board was the spineless 3-0 defeat at Newcastle United on Saturday when Pellegrino accused some of his players of giving up.

"There are all sorts of managers mentioned; Mark Hughes has a lot of Premier League experience and I think that will count in his favour".

Assistant coaches Carlos Compagnucci and Xavier Tamarit have also left the club.

So they hired Pellegrino, and nine months on they must be regretting their decision.

Hughes played more than 50 times for Southampton in the late 1990s and his appointment would end a run of four non-British managers after Mauricio Pochettino, Ronald Koeman, Puel and Pellegrino. As for Puel, he is now in charge at Leicester who, ironically, are eighth in the Premier League, the position that Saints were when they fired the Frenchman.

Southampton have lost a large number of players to their domestic rivals in the past few years and club chairman Ralph Krueger said earlier in the season that they were keen to end the perception that they were a selling club.

It is added that former Hull and Watford boss Silva "is not understood to be in consideration" for the post, while ex-West Ham manager Slaven Bilic "is not prominent on the immediate shortlist".

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