SOME good news this week for Saints supporters.

Manager Ralph Hasenhuttl was named manager of the month for July, which really summed up his success since the notorious 9-0 game and makes it even more positive to realise he has now signed a four-year contract extension.

As I’ve said before, this is great news because we have been notorious in the past 20 years for having more managers than anyone. Ralph has obviously been here long enough to work out the club, the fantastic support it has and the possibilities there for the future.

That news was coupled up with the fact that one of his young players, Jake Vokins, was also signing a four-year contract.

Ralph, unlike some of his predecessors, has already stated a great interest in using and building up the academy – as it’s called nowadays as opposed to a youth policy in the old days. The fact we are producing youngsters into the first team is a good thing.

  • Another youngster who caught my eye and just about everyone who was looking at the game was in the Brentford versus Fulham match, which Harrison Reed was playing in.

I remember seeing his early days with Saints. Being a red-headed midfield player, I likened him in some ways to legend Alan Ball.

I watched the game against Brentford, which meant so much to each team, he certainly did well and of course is still a Saints player and is getting experienced elsewhere. Things like this look good for the future.

Talking about that play-off match, there are figures around the game galore now. The team going up can apparently look to increase their income by more than £200million.

  • That is why you have to feel so sorry for a club like relegated Bournemouth, who needed the big amounts of money that come in mainly from the television rights in their case.

While they will get a parachute payment and another payment based on their finishing position – already things are changing with the transfer of Nathan Ake to Manchester City for a reported £41million. With another player previously walking out on a free in Ryan Fraser.

The money will give them more of a solid base. More and more changes will inevitably take place, senior players who want to be in the Premier League will be looking for transfers. The club may want to move some players on anyway but will want to sort everything out ready for the start of the season, because promotion is a must in the first year.

  • When we talk about figures in the game I sometimes have to make sure I’m reading them properly when I see that some youngsters are signing new contracts when they are about 20 years old for thousands of pounds per week.

I think one of the biggest surprises of the week was when Borussia Dortmund were reportedly moving into sign a player from Manchester City, who is 16 today.

I’m not sure if he is still at school but I’m sure his schoolmates will be wishing him well.

Dortmund have done this before when they signed Jadon Sancho from Manchester City and have a habit of selling them on with a much larger figure than they paid for them as youngsters.

They obviously have part of their staff which work very hard on the youth side of things – but I’m pretty sure you would not have been able to sign a youngster to go abroad in our day.

Having said that, I could sign schoolboys at 14 years old, but they would have had to have left school before I gave them a professional contract and an apprenticeship before they were 18.

  • But how things have changed. On the one hand, players at Arsenal - who really should be one of the top four clubs with their history and size - they pay massive transfer fees and salaries but this week it was announced they have had to make 55 of their staff redundant because of the virus problems.

I wonder how those staff feel when they sign on the dole and realise what the players are getting, even though they have agreed to take a wage drop.

At some stage, something has to be sorted out in general, whether it’s a salary cap or not, I don’t know.

The other headline of course was Wigan losing their claim to have their 12-point deduction reinstated and an investigation being asked for about the ownership of clubs now.

Wigan didn’t lose 12 points because of what they did on the field, they lost them because of what their owners did or didn’t do off the field.

The request to look into ownership also links with the farce which has been carrying on for a while at my initial club Newcastle United.

Coming from up there, I am very much aware of the feelings of supporters.

The potential buyers were from Saudi Arabia. Some of my friends up there said they weren’t bothered where the owners were from as long as they got rid of the gentleman who has been the owner for the past few years.

No-one knows why the Saudis apparently pulled out, who knows? But I think with what’s happening there and places like Wigan, new ownership should be looked into more than ever before by the people who run the game.