Southampton’s players have donated their wages to charity after their 9-0 humiliation at home to Leicester on Friday.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side were obliterated by the high-flying Foxes as they slumped to the joint-heaviest ever Premier League defeat, a record previously held solo by Ipswich’s defeat by the same scoreline against Manchester United.
The club will consequently donate their players’ earnings from the game to Saints Foundation - their own scheme to help ‘give back’ to the community.
“Southampton Football Club’s first-team players and coaching staff have announced they will be donating their wages from last Friday to Saints Foundation,” a club statement read. ”As the first step towards that, the group has decided that they wish to donate their wages from the day of the Leicester game to Saints Foundation, in order to help the vital work that is conducted by the charity.”
It was a night to forget as Ryan Bertrand’s 12th-minute red card, following Ben Chilwell’s opener, preceded hat-tricks from Ayoze Perez and Jamie Vardy.
England’s James Maddison and Youri Tielemans also scored as Southampton were left reeling on a weekend which saw them drop into the relegation zone.
“The squad has been in at Staplewood Campus throughout the weekend, working on putting things right for the club’s supporters,” the statement added.
”Saints Foundation works with 12,000 young people and adults of all ages every year, using the power and passion of sport to transform lives.
”The players and staff are now directing all their energy and focus towards the two games in Manchester this week.”
Manager Hasenhuttl added there would be ‘no more messages’ towards the fans as the squad bid to make amends for their humiliation.
But they face a potentially chastening double; two matches in five days against reigning Premier League champions Manchester City.
‘A moment the fans didn’t deserve’
Reaction to the Premier League hammering - the worst since 1995 - was mixed as 2016 Premier League winners Leicester sent shockwaves through the top tier.
Radio Solent’s sports editor Adam Blackmore called it ‘a moment that encapsulated the downturn of recent years’ and fans were left impressed by the subsequent wage donation.
#SaintsFC The Fans— Adam Blackmore (@AdamBlackmore) October 26, 2019
Last night you endured something you didn’t deserve, a moment that encapsulated the downturn of recent years
The game should be a watershed moment for the players - you deserve a response worthy of your support - if you don’t get it, they don’t deserve you
Although Saints fan ‘Jay’ tweeted his support for the move, another called ‘Rob’ joked about donating goals to their opponents.
Well played everyone 😇— Jay (@ffsJxy) October 27, 2019
Donating goals to opposition as well as money to charity, respectable 🤝— Rob (@rjcSFC) October 27, 2019
Very classy move. I’m a Leicester fan but the more that game went on I really felt for the Saints fans. I hope your team uses this as a turning point because I’d like to see you stay in the PL and your fans deserve it— Im such a comedian (@dogs_having_fun) October 27, 2019
It's very classy. I'm proud to be a Saints fan again.— Darren Hill (@darrenhill) October 27, 2019
Fans on the social media tool seemed to generally support the move, with plenty labelling it a ‘classy’ move by the club - even from opposition fans.
But not all were impressed, with some fans arguing a heftier fee was more appropriate after the shambolic display.
Get that but what about the fans that paid good hard earned money to suffer that - we pay for some sort of entertainment - Friday wasn’t on any counts - just embarrassing- u and players shld be refunding every #saintsfc fan for their time ,tkt and travel— Saint Foo Fighter (@SaintFooFighter) October 27, 2019
Couldn’t they have donated their wages from the whole week rather than just the day?— Jacob Tanswell (@J_Tanswell) October 27, 2019
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