Chairman: 'Claude Puel future to be decided next week'

Claude Puel future to be decided next week
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Southampton manager Claude Puel is happy to wait until after Sunday's visit of Crystal Palace before holding talks with the club over his long-term future.

Claude Puel has insisted that he is simply focused on Southampton's final game of the season after it was revealed that his future will be decided in the summer.

Speculation regarding the Frenchman's job refuses to go away following a reported training-ground row earlier this month, combined with fan unrest due to a perceived negative style of play.

Speaking ahead of the Saints' goalless draw with Manchester United on Wednesday night, chairman Ralph Krueger said that a decision over the 55-year-old's position at St Mary's Stadium can wait until next week.

"The time for a football analysis is next week, after the season," he told BBC Sport. "If we, for the fourth season in a row, end up in the top half of the table, that's a good record to build on."

Puel is only concerned about preparing his side for the visit of Stoke City on the final day, though, on the back of what he believes was a good showing in the stalemate with United.

"I try to stay focused about our last game now," he told reporters. "After the season we have time to discuss and speak about this, and make a debrief. It's important to focus on our last game.

"It's a shame I think because in the first half we had good play without quality or intensity and the second half it was better with possibilities and opportunities.

"I think we deserved to score. I am happy for the second half because we played good football with good chances to win the game which is important for us."

Southampton are currently eighth in the Premier League table, two places worse off than this time 12 months ago.

Southampton manager Claude Puel during the Premier League match against Arsenal on May 10, 2017
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