McMenemy hopeful over Koeman's Southampton future

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Former Southampton boss Lawrie McMenemy wants to see Ronald Koeman remain at St Mary's Stadium for the next two years of his contract.

Lawrie McMenemy is hopeful Ronald Koeman will remain at Southampton for the duration of his contract with the south-coast club.

Koeman has enjoyed an excellent first season in the Premier League and has Southampton in contention for a place in the UEFA Europa League.

The Dutchman was linked with a move to former club Barcelona, although that talk has quickly died down with the Catalan club winning La Liga and reaching the final of the UEFA Champions League.

McMenemy spent 12 years as Southampton manager from 1973 to 1985 and guided them to FA Cup glory in 1976.

Having fielded interest from other clubs in his time on the south coast, he understands the temptation that Koeman may face, but hopes to see him remain at St Mary's.

He told Perform: "It [speculation] always happens, if a manager's been successful and there are vacancies anywhere else. It happened in my time.

"I got linked and it's good when you get linked because it means you're doing alright as opposed to what's happening to poor [West Ham boss] Sam Allardyce, getting linked with people coming in because you're getting kicked out.

"It's a plus so far as being linked with various other big jobs, but it will always be like that because the door is wider now.

"His history as a coach, apparently, is that he always sees out his contract. He's only done one year and he's got two more left and as long as he's given the freedom he's obviously got at the moment, he must be happy with the events on the field.

"I assume that he's happy here and I hope he sticks to what he normally does and sees out at least the remaining couple of years."

 

Lawrie McMenemy was speaking at an event for the Football Foundation, which is funded by the Premier League, The FA and the Government through Sport England, and is celebrating 15 years of improving the country's grassroots football facilities

McMenemy was unveiled as a Football Foundation Ambassador and was speaking at a visit to one of nearly 500 3G pitches the Foundation has delivered. Many of these pitches are used by professional clubs' community trusts' outreach work.

Since its launch in 2000, the Foundation has supported 13,000 grassroots sport projects with grants worth £520million and leveraged £736m in additional partnership funding, thereby delivering schemes with a total project cost of £1.24bn.