Leeds United boss Daniel Farke has tipped Southampton’s Russell Martin for a ‘big future’ in the game ahead of this weekend’s Championship clash.
Leeds United and Southampton meet on the pitch at St. Mary’s this weekend and in the dugout, two familiar faces will be pit against each other. Farke will lead his Whites out to face Southampton and Martin, who he managed briefly at Norwich City.
The two sides come into the game in contrasting form though. Leeds haven’t lost in the Championship since their defeat to Birmingham City in the second outing of the season, while Southampton have lost four in a row.
The Saints’ poor turn has seen criticism of Martin emerge. Some have questioned whether he’s the main to lead the ambitious club back to the Premier League.
Now though, ahead of this weekend’s meeting, Farke has delivered his glowing verdict of Martin.
As quoted by reporter Phil Hay, Farke said in his pre-match press conference that the Southampton boss has a ‘big future’ in the dugout. He admitted he first got a taste of his capabilities in just a short time together at Carrow Road.
Farke on Southampton boss Russell Martin: "He's a really good coach and he's got a big future in the game. I worked with him at Norwich. He was a great player, a big character. We only worked together for a few months but you can always sense this." #lufc
— Phil Hay (@PhilHay_) September 28, 2023
Destined for the top?
During the first few years of his managerial career, Martin has divided opinions at times. However, in tough jobs at MK Dons and Swansea City, the 37-year-old was successful in embedding a clear philosophy and ethos on and off the pitch.
His possession-based style of play have seen his sides produce some fantastic displays over the years and for top clubs who want to develop their young players, Martin’s clubs have been viewed as great destinations. Of course, this play style comes with risks, as has been seen in recent weeks.
The Southampton job presents new challenges. The Saints want to win promotion back to the Premier League and given some of the talent on their books, they certainly have the capacity to do so. Martin hasn’t managed a club of that expectation yet, perhaps explaining some of the early teething problems.
At 37 though, Martin does look to have the makings of a fantastic manager. He’s got the backing of Farke in his bid to succeed, who rated him highly after just a short spell managing him at Norwich.