Plenty of reasons to be cheerful

Thursday 16th January 2014 11:15

Nicola Cortese: Resigned at Southampton

Nicola Cortese: Resigned at Southampton

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Southampton FanZoner Ben Stanfield sees plenty of reasons to be cheerful and refutes the idea that Saints are in turmoil.

Its fair to say that there is never a dull day on the south coast.

Just when you're relaxed and enjoying your club's rapid climb up the Premier League a bolt out of the blue often arrives.

This time last year it was the sad process in which Nigel Adkins was ceremoniously dumped by the club and now, maybe even more significantly, is the resignation of our chairman Nicola Cortese.

Whilst there is no doubting that Cortese hasn't always got on with everyone in the World (as local journalists will particularly confirm), on the whole he has been a breath of fresh air for Southampton Football Club.

Indeed the use of the word 'breath' is probably more significant than I think as it was him, and him alone, that encouraged the Liebherr family to buy, and thus save Saints, in 2009 when we were but a few breaths from going out of business and into oblivion.

Cortese is a businessman and, whilst some like myself may not have agreed with all of his decision making all of the time, there is no doubting that he has turned the club around into a very profitable brand. We have to also remember that while he has had 'the vision' it hasn't been his money that has actually been delivering that vision.

So while the national press today report a lot of doom and gloom at Saints, I wouldn't necessarily say it is the widespread turmoil that they want us to believe.

Yes we have lost a significant member of our leadership team but we still, at the moment, have our financial backers/owners, have a wonderful stadium, have one of the most talented young squads in the best league in the world, have a youth academy that is the envy of a lot of other clubs and have a fan base that has, and always will, support the team through thick and thin.

Ok we need to have an element of realism that the next few days and months could bring some further 'bolts from the blue' but why worry about tomorrow when you should live for today?

We need to be positive and thank Cortese for what he has done but more importantly build on the legacy, and vision, that has been left.

The fans are what make any football club. Not the players; not the manager; not the chairman. They come and go all the time but it's you and me that follow Saints across the country that need to always be there and support them.

Turmoil is being on the brink of oblivion, with little or no hope. Saints aren't in turmoil. We were in 2009 but now we are actually on the crest of a wave!

This loss should actually be viewed as the start of a new chapter in the club's history and, while we need to always show our sincere gratitude to Mr Cortese for believing in helping to save us, we need to remember that our club is still in a very positive position.

If the manager and some of the players decide that they don't want to be here because Cortese is no longer here then that's up to them. I would only ever want people to be at Southampton because they are proud to pull on the Saints shirt whoever is stood on the touchline or sat in the directors box.

But the most important thing is to get behind Katharina Liebherr and support her, and her family, and make them realise that they are very lucky to own a Club as fantastic as ours.

Thank you Nicola Cortese for all the wonderful things you've done for Southampton football club and best of luck to you Katharina as you build on the continuation of this amazing journey that your family has helped to deliver since 2009.

Lets keep marching in Saints!

By Ben Stanfield, Fanzone's Southampton Blogger. Follow him on Twitter: @benstanners, and don't forget to follow @FanZone too!

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