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Southampton name Hasenhuttl new manager

Napoli v RB Leipzig - UEFA Europa League

NAPLES, ITALY - FEBRUARY 15: Coach of RB Leipzig Ralph Hasenhuttl celebrates the victory after UEFA Europa League Round of 32 match between Napoli and RB Leipzig at the Stadio San Paolo on February 15, 2018 in Naples, Italy. (Photo by Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images)

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The man known as the Alpine Klopp is coming to the Premier League.

Just two days after parting ways with Mark Hughes, Southampton announced Wednesday morning it had signed Ralph Hasenhuttl on a two-and-a-half-year contract to be the club’s new first team manager.

Hasenhuttl most recently coached RB Leipzig in the Bundesliga, beating expectations by leading the side to 2nd place two years ago and the Europa League quarterfinals last season.

“The urgency to find a path back to our potential and to the results that we expect cannot be underestimated,” Southampton Chairman Ralph Krueger said. “For that reason, we are extremely pleased that Ralph Hasenhuttl has agreed to become our new manager and do all he can to help guide us back on that path.

“This manager change offers us a fresh start and, very quickly, Ralph emerged as our ideal candidate. As a coach, he embodies the passion, structure, communication skill set, work ethic and appetite for growth that we strive for in our Southampton Way. The quick, smooth and seamless negotiation process underlines the character of the person that he is.

The 51-year-old former Austrian international has drawn comparisons to Jurgen Klopp for his up-tempo, attacking style of play. More importantly for Southampton, he’s a coach with experience at the bottom and top of the Bundesliga table. Hasenhuttl previously led Ingolstadt from bottom of the 2. Bundesliga into the top division, earning promotion in just two seasons as well.