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Last Updated: Thursday, 4 March, 2004, 14:40 GMT
Saints unveil Sturrock
Southampton chairman Rupert Lowe and Paul Sturrock.
There's things to be won - we want to compete for the honours
Paul Sturrock
Southampton have unveiled Plymouth boss Paul Sturrock as their new manager.

Saints called a news conference to parade the 47-year-old Scot as the successor to Gordon Strachan.

They thrashed out a compensation package with Argyle for Sturrock, who had a clause in his contract allowing him to speak to Premiership clubs.

"Paul has all the qualities to be one of the rising stars of Premier League management," said Saints chairman Rupert Lowe.

"I hope he will fulfil that promise with Southampton."

Sturrock has signed a two-year deal, which after the first year will become a rolling one-year contract.

He was elated to have landed the job, but admitted leaving Plymouth after over three years was a wrench.

"I'm delighted personally," he said. "An ambition has been fulfilled to manage in the Premier League. It's an important day in my career.

"There's things to be won - we want to compete for the honours.

"It's a very sad day to leave Plymouth where I had great ties with the Argyle fans.

"But they have a strong bunch of players there and I'm positive they will respond to the challenge."

Lowe dismissed Sturrock's lack of experience in top flight management.

STURROCK FACTFILE
1979-89: 385 league appearances, 109 goals for Dundee Utd
1983: Wins Scottish Championship medal
Oct 93: Takes over as St Johnstone manager
Sept 98: Returns to Dundee Utd as manager
Oct 2000: Takes over at Plymouth
May 2002: Div Three manager of the year after guiding Plymouth to title
"His tenure at Plymouth has shown he is capable of consistent success over several seasons." he added.

"To do that on the financial resources available to him and during a ground redevelopment underlines this.

"I have no doubt that there will be some comment in the media as to whether Paul can change gear and leapfrog the First Division.

"If I did not believe that he could, we would not have made the appointment."

"He has the essential qualities to drive Southampton forward of integrity, loyalty and constancy.

"We have 11 games left with much at stake in terms of our finishing position but also laying the foundations for next season."

Lowe turned his attentions to former Scottish international Sturrock after Glenn Hoddle withdrew from the race.

Hoddle pulled out on Wednesday, claiming that he did not have the support of the entire board.

Sturrock signed a new five-year contract at Plymouth in the summer but insisted on the clause allowing him to talk to a Premiership club.

Plymouth chairman Paul Stapleton earlier told the club website: "After reaching an agreement with Southampton we have reluctantly accepted that Paul will be leaving us.

"We are, of course, disappointed but fully understand Paul's reasons for wanting to move on."

Sturrock has taken Plymouth to a four-point lead at the top of Division Two.

After a glittering playing career at Dundee United, Sturrock began his managerial career in August 1993 at St Johnstone.

He returned to Tannadice as manager in September 1998, and resigned two matches into the 2000-2001 season.

Plymouth were quick to snap him up, appointing him in October of that year.

He led Argyle to the Division Three title in the 2001-02 season.

Southampton's caretaker boss Steve Wigley will revert to his role as director of youth at Southampton.




WATCH AND LISTEN
Southampton boss Paul Sturrock
"An ambition has been fulfilled today"





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