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Page last updated at 10:38 GMT, Monday, 3 August 2009 11:38 UK

Cortese appointed Saints chairman

Nicola Cortese and Markus Liebherr
Cortese (left) pictured with Saints owner Markus Liebherr

Southampton have appointed Swiss businessman Nicola Cortese as their new executive chairman.

The 40-year-old has been overseeing the running of the club on a day-to-day basis since it was taken over by fellow Swiss Markus Liebherr.

Cortese's principal role will be the development of the long term strategy for the football club and the business.

"There are great expectations here, and I will ensure that every effort is made to meet them," said Cortese.

He added: "We will take our example from our supporters, who already are what we aim to become - Premier League.

"With their support we will again become a Premier League club. The supporters, the city of Southampton and the region deserve nothing less."

Owner Liebherr added: "Nicola and I have enjoyed a long business relationship and it was Nicola who convinced me to buy the club.

"He then conducted what proved to be a very difficult process expertly and professionally."

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