Few sides will have been as glad to see the end of Mauricio Pochettino’s Southampton tenure as Garry Monk’s Swansea City.
Well, maybe Tottenham.
In three meetings with the Saints under the former Espanyol chief, the Swans were unable to find the onion bag so much as once.
Newly-promoted Southampton had even held the Welshmen, then bossed by Michael Laudrup, when flailing around under Nigel Adkins.
However, the arrival of Pochettino saw them shut off the goal-supply valve..
Tactically it makes sense too.
The rabidly energetic, high-pressing defence his south coast charges took to with such relish was arguably a kind of kryptonite for the puritanical short-passing game that is the Swansea default setting.
However, the Argentine (and his translator of dubious necessity) have fled for White Hart Lane, making the 6/4 odds about a victory for Monk’s men much more attractive than they otherwise might have been.
Southampton, who make the journey to south Wales under Ronald Koeman for the first time, have shipped a modest three times in four games this term.
However, each and every one of those concessions were sustained in the two outings they’ve so far contested away from the safety of St Mary’s.
Koeman’s Saints seem more susceptible to shipping strikes away from the ranch than they were under his predecessor, meaning the free-scoring Swans can be backed to puncture their rearguard with renewed conviction.
After all the hosts are looking sharp.
Only Everton and Chelsea have netted with more regularity than the Liberty Stadium gang this term.
High-ranking rearguards of the ilk of the league-leaders and Manchester United have been tapped for two strikes apiece.
Southampton’s Dutch gaffer previously spoke of his desire to take it to the opposition away from home in the wake of their heartening 3-1 win over West Ham at the Boleyn Ground.
And this should only offer further counter-attacking encouragement to the ravenous Swans attack that they’ve denied so much as a morsel for the past three meetings.