Southampton set to appoint former Leeds boss Jesse Marsch as Nathan Jones replacement

Harry Watkinson
Leeds boss Jesse Marsch celebrates a victory

Southampton are set to appoint former Leeds United boss Jesse Marsch as their new manager in a bid to avoid relegation, according to reports.

The American will replace Nathan Jones, who was sacked after just three months after losing seven of his eight league matches in charge.

Now, Marsch has a massive job on his hands to avoid the drop, with Southampton picking up just 15 points from their 22 opening league matches.

Indeed, it was their most recent defeat to fellow relegation contenders Wolves that was the final nail in the coffin for Jones, after a run of terrible results and some very questionable comments in press conferences.

Marsch was also sacked by Leeds this month after the Whites won just four of their first 20 matches this season, which has left them just one point adrift of the drop zone.

With that in mind, some Saints fans have been left frustrated at these latest developments regarding Marsch, given they need someone to get them out of a relegation battle – but they have instead gone for someone who has just put Leeds into one.

Admittedly though, Marsch did help the Whites to avoid the drop last season after replacing Marcelo Bielsa, so he does have it in his locker.

Marsch was not the only big name linked to the Southampton job, with Wayne Rooney, Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard all keen on landing the role, as reported by Football365.

The American does have more experience than the English trio, however, so he may prove to be a better fit.

Marsch has worked across the Red Bull group at New York Red Bulls, Red Bull Salzburg and RB Leipzig, where former Southampton boss Ralph Hassenhuttl spent two years in charge.

This is believed to be a key factor in the Southampton board’s decision to opt for the former Leeds boss, according to the Athletic

The reality is, whoever took over at St. Mary’s would have had a huge task ahead of them to avoid relegation.

As mentioned, they are currently rock-bottom of the Premier League table with just 15 points – four points away from safety.

Fellow relegation contenders Wolves and Leicester have enjoyed some improved results recently, while Everton have appointed Sean Dyche as their new manager, which could give them a better chance of survival.

Leeds are also set to appoint a new manager in the coming days, while West Ham arguably have the quality in their squad to get out of trouble. With that in mind, the Saints need a dramatic turnaround in form and fast.

Their next three league games come against Chelsea, Marsch’s former club Leeds and then Leicester, so Southampton fans will be looking for at least four points from those matches.

Indeed, if the American is appointed as expected, it will be very interesting to see what kind of reception he gets at Elland Road on the 25th of February.

READ MORE: Nathan Jones: the definitive collection of his best and most bizarre quotes as Southampton manager