8:20pm Wednesday 15th January 2014
By Simon Carter
HANDS up who had thought stability was now a buzzword at St Mary's?
Today's momentous events at Saints are amazing even by the soap opera standards that have been played out there in recent years.
Nicola Cortese - the man described by one Saints fan I spoke to earlier today as 'marmite - you either love him or hate him' - has gone, to be replaced temporarily by the daughter of the man who saved the club from potential oblivion, Katharina Liebherr.
Is fans knew little of Markus' background when he emerged from the shadows to purchase Saints, they know even less about Katharina.
What they do know, though, is that big changes could be on the way to a club that had, finally, seemingly obtained stability.
Where Cortese's departure leaves Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino is open to question, given the manager's previous public backing of the man who brought him to English football.
Where does Cortese's exit leave the likes of Luke Shaw, Adam Lallana and other leading star names.
In the immediate future, it leaves them still at Saints and under contract for quite a few years yet.
It would be astonishing - to put it mildly - to see a raft of players queuing up to follow Cortese out of the door just because the chairman had resigned.
It would be pretty remarkable if Pochettino left, to be honest.
I can't ever remember a Premier League manager leaving what is a great job - and let's not forget that, it IS a great job - just because his chairman had left the building.
Still, we could find out all the answers to the questions concerning the manager's own future tomorrow.
That promises to be another incredible day in the life of this most incredible of football clubs.
Too often boardroom politics have dominated events at St Mary's in the past decade - I give you Rupert Lowe, Michael Wilde, Leon Crouch, Jim Hone, Ken Dulieu - and, sadly, that is now the case again.
Rupert Lowe (left) and Michael Wilde
For what seemed all too brief a moment in time, it was football that was the main talking point at Saints - and what great memories the fans are left with from the Nicola Cortese era.
Now politics are the main talking point again, and instability is again a buzzword.
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