Southampton executive director Les Reed has revealed the club are close to announcing a high-calibre managerial appointment to replace Mauricio Pochettino who left the club to take over at Spurs last month.
Pochettino replaced Nigel Adkins as Southampton manager last year and guided the south coast club to eighth position in the Premier League in his first full season in charge.
The Argentinean’s departure for Spurs has left a void at Southampton but Reed insists Southampton fans can look forward to an exciting appointment sooner rather than later.
Dutchman Ronald Koeman, Hull City boss Steve Bruce along with former Swansea manager Michael Laudrup, ex-Celtic boss Neill Lennon and former Tottenham manager Tim Sherwood have all been linked with the vacant manager's job.
“We are closing in now on our preferred candidate,” Reed told Southampton’s YouTube channel.
“When it was actually announced that Mauricio was leaving we were inundated with enquiries but by and large we were amazed by the level of applicant who wanted to show interest in the job,
“We had possibly six to 10 candidates on our ongoing research list. We were delighted that by the time we got down to the final four, all four of them had been on our list originally.
“Things are going well and I’m hoping – what takes time with these things is the paperwork – but I’m hoping that we can get that sorted very quickly and the fans will be excited about an announcement coming up sooner rather than later.”
Reed insisted it is an exciting time for Southampton with the club set to open a brand new multi-million pound training facility next month and revealed the club are close to announcing two prestige pre-season friendlies.
He added: “We’ve got two marquee fixtures against European clubs one away from home and one at home which we are just about finalising the details now so we’ll be able to announce that soon as well.”