Hasenhuttl reveals why Sport Republic are 'phenomenal' for finance and freedom

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl celebrates in front of the fans and (left) Martin Semmens & Dragan Solak.
Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl celebrates in front of the fans and (left) Martin Semmens & Dragan Solak.

MANAGER Ralph Hasenhuttl labelled Sport Republic “phenomenal” for their financial efforts to lift Saints in the short-term, while remaining in the background of operations.

The new owners bankrolled a summer transfer window to the tune of £60million with 10 incomings and no significant outgoings until deadline day.

Then, the likes of Oriol Romeu, Yan Valery and loanees Jan Bednarek and Jack Stephens did join out-of-contract Fraser Forster and Shane Long out the exit door.

Saints also reportedly had a bid of up to £30million for PSV’s forward Cody Gakpo rejected, displaying their willingness to break the club transfer record for the right player.

But, to add to the transfer dealings, Hasenhuttl praised Sport Republic – formed by Dragan Solak, Rasmus Ankersen and Henrik Kraft – for the way they have conducted themselves since January.

Sport Republic (Pic: Stuart Martin)

“Our CEO, Martin (Semmens), did a fantastic job to bring in fantastic people, people that really care about this club, not only financially but with their knowledge and with their football knowledge,” Hasenhuttl told the Daily Echo.

“This is a very good combination. On the one side let us do our job and on the other side really support us from the background without wanting to push.

“In the big picture, they are there and it absolutely positive from me and phenomenal to see how in the short-term we came together and were growing together.

“We try to be the people that make the daily work but in the background you always need people who support you with their knowledge and all the other things. This is something that has worked quite well so far and there is no reason why it shouldn’t get better in the future.”

Assessing how the club looks after nine months of stewardship under the investment firm, and a first active transfer window, Hasenhuttl made his thoughts clear.

“We are definitely in a better position,” he insisted. “This was the first transfer window where we didn’t have to sell the best players before we can buy new ones.

“We could buy not the superstars - that was never the goal for us - but we want to buy the Romeos (Lavia), the (Armel) Bella-Kotchaps of this world for this money that was for us in the past not possible."

He continued: “It is not a problem for us anymore and I think this is a very healthy way. When you speak about Romeo and all these guys, as soon as they play for us their value is exploding because we see them performing on the highest level.

“Even just getting the chance to play in the Premier League lifts their value massively and this is a reason why we are hunting for these players. Meanwhile, I think everyone knows what a special place we are for these players.”

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