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Mauricio Pochettino turning heads in the Saints dugout
IT was one of many texts I suspect were sent simultaneously buzzing around Southampton cyberspace at that exact moment.
“Just seen the new Saints manager. Well fit and sexy. Lovely smile! Hehe!”
That was the message that pinged up on my mobile phone as Mauricio Pochettino made his TV debut in living rooms across the county. And rather embarrassingly the sender was my mum.
The fact dad was sitting next to her didn’t seem to bother her because for the first time in decades she suddenly became very interested in the oh-so-beautiful game.
While dad, a die-hard Saints fan, was swatting up on stats and taking in his player profile which included 20 caps for Argentina and a managerial career at Espanyol, mum had other things on her mind.
Things like the 40-year-old’s fresh faced olive skin, designer stubble, suave suit that looked fresh out of an Armani shoot and the chiselled features that made her, and other women across the county, edge forward on their sofas.
I won’t even get started on those sultry Spanish tones as he said “I am very ‘appy to be ‘ere” in the sexiest of accents.
Or his twinkly deep brown eyes and huge smile he flashed while each mesmerising word was translated into English.
In that split second he paused from his melodic spiel to take a swig of coffee and flashed a very expensive-looking watch, all women swooned and all men wanted to dress like him.
And the temperatures are not just rising in my parents house as a straw poll in the office among the girls confirmed my suspicions with one breathlessly remarking: “I could never get enough of his stubble.”
There is quite simply no doubting that the Saints’ new boy has got pulses racing off the pitch and attracted a new legion of followers.
No, I am not talking about the die-harders in the Northam End but the partners -those who couldn’t explain the offside rule if their lives depended on it or whose football knowledge extends only to David Beckham’s tattoo collection.
Of course like every other woman who got a similar text, I started my research.
And I found Pochettino’s sex appeal is already well-established internationally.
How could we have missed his muscular physique and flowing locks when he came up against England in the 2002 World Cup, tripping Michael Owen and giving England a 1-0 win?
Classy Mauricio provides the sort of phwoar-factor which has not been seen since his friend Jose Mourinho debuted on our shores and brightened up the game.
Looking back to the old days of British footie, the 5ft 11in Argentinian is certainly a far cry from that breed of manager.
Remember Brian Clough who pounded the touchline of Nottingham Forest in his hallmark trusty green jumper?
Not to mention past Saints managers who have adopted, shall we say, a more relaxed approach to dress.
Take Paul Sturrock and Jan Poortvliet for example and their penchant for shorts and tracksuits.
But Mauricio seems to hit all the right style buttons as he is spotted pounding the pitch in shiny black Italian brogues complete with a bespoke suit so sharply tailored it looks carved.
He also relaxes in chunky knits a la Daniel Craig while the grey Louis Vuitton scarf he wore during last Saturday’s Manchester City game was worn with typically stylish aplomb.
Even when found in a tracksuit and skinny-fit trousers on the touchline, he has sported a fresh-out-of-the-box pair of eye-catching snazzy Nike trainers with a striking florescent orange tick.
His dapper wardrobe has not gone unnoticed among personal stylists either.
Award-winning Hampshire personal stylist Chantelle Znideric said: “His style is smart and laid back but has a masculine edge still.
“It tells me that he takes pride in his appearance but his priority is managing the team and doing his job well – it’s not too immaculate or overdone.
“Women are attracted to this look and like the idea of men in smart suits because it’s confident and domineering in a good way.
“Often men that have a clean cut image will boast handsome features and you’ll notice their eyes, hair or smile more clearly.”
But there’s bad news ladies – Mauricio’s married.