Southampton Football Club: The Complete Guide

Southampton Football Club is based in Southampton, Hampshire, England. They play in the Premier League, on the top tier of English Football. As a club, they have spent most of their history in the top tier ever since their 1966 promotion.

Basic Facts

Southampton’s longest period in the top tier of the Premier League was 27 seasons. These 27 seasons were between 1978 and 2005. 

The club has been nicknamed “The Saints” ever since they were created in 1888 because they were founded by St. Mary’s Church of England Young Men’s Association. This means that Southampton was made as a church football team.

Southampton’s rival is Portsmouth. The friendly competition is brought on due to how close they are geographically and their maritime histories.

As they are two cities on the sea, they both have a strong history of marketing, games, and waterway boundaries. When matches between Southampton and Portsmouth arise, they are known as the South Coast Derby.

Home Grounds

Southampton’s home ground is at St Mary’s Stadium. Initially, the stadium was The Dell, and since the 1980s, the club wanted to replace The Dell with another stadium that was less cramped.

A change didn’t happen until 1990, when Taylor Report demanded that all First and Second Division clubs had all-seater stadiums by August 1994.

Instead of taking this opportunity to build a new stadium, Southampton decided to upgrade The Dell and did so in 1993. The Dell had a small capacity of just over 15,000.

Eventually, the club attempted to build a 25,000 seater stadium, but the process was unsuccessful. In the end, Southampton’s city council joined in and offered the club the chance to make a new ground on a disused gas worksite in the heart of the city. 

The club was recreated just by St. Mary’s Church, and as the Southampton F.C was initially created by this church, they decided to honor this connection, naming their new stadium, St. Mary’s Stadium. 

Main Trophies

Southampton has many wins and many runner-up titles, but the main trophies that fill their hearts are their FA Cup Trophy and their Football League Trophy.

Southampton won the FA Cup in the 1975 – 1976 season, and they won the Football League Trophy in the 2009 – 2010 season.

Club History

The Premier League was created in 1992, and ever since then, Southampton Football Club has competed in 20 of the 27 seasons.

In 2009 Southampton F.C was under some intense financial pressure. Fans were prepared for the players to be out on loan with fewer experienced faces taking the pitch or possibly having no club at all.

With all these possible changes, everyone thought the Saints would end that season in the third tier as the best outcome. It would have been the first time since the 1959 – 1960 season.

Thankfully, Markus Liebherr bought the club out of administration, and the public applause was enough to shake the entire south.

Unfortunately, Markus Liebherr passed away in August 2010, but his memory lives on. Because of him, Southampton Football Club has been able to climb up the league table into the firm footing it has today. 

Club Timeline

2018-19Premier League1639 
2017-18Premier League1736 
2016-17Premier League846 
2015-16Premier League663 
2014-15Premier League760 
2013-14Premier League856 
2012-13Premier League1441 
2010-11League One292Promoted
2009-10League One773 
2004-05Premier League2032Relegated
2003-04Premier League1247 
2002-03Premier League852 
2001-02Premier League1145 
2000-01Premier League1052 
1999-00Premier League1544 
1998-99Premier League1741 
1997-98Premier League1248 
1996-97Premier League1641 
1995-96Premier League1738 
1994-95Premier League1054 
1993-94Premier League1843 
1992-93Premier League1850 
1991-921st Division1853 
1990-911st Division1934 
1989-902nd Division674Promoted
1988-892nd Division1163 
1987-883rd Division193Promoted
1986-872nd Division2048Relegated
1985-862nd Division1850 
1984-851st Division2140Relegated
1983-841st Division1352 
1982-831st Division1650 
1981-821st Division1944 
1980-811st Division1735 
1979-802nd Division254Promoted
1978-792nd Division455 
1977-782nd Division644 
1976-771st Division2034Relegated
1975-762nd Division156Promoted
1974-752nd Division451 
1973-742nd Division647 
1972-732nd Division646 
1971-722nd Division550 
1970-712nd Division1342 
1969-701st Division2126Relegated
1968-691st Division1734 
1967-681st Division1537 
1966-671st Division1736 
1965-661st Division1936 
1964-651st Division1537 
1963-642nd Division261Promoted
1962-632nd Division352 
1961-622nd Division353 
1960-612nd Division647 
1959-602nd Division1636 
1958-592nd Division1540 
1957-581st Division2132Relegated
1956-571st Division2032 
1955-561st Division943 
1954-551st Division448 
1953-541st Division1836 
1952-531st Division943 
1951-521st Division1242 
1950-511st Division1240 
1949-501st Division352 
1948-491st Division843 
1947-481st Division2036 
1946-471st Division944 
1938-392nd Division1835 
1937-382nd Division1539 
1936-372nd Division1934 
1935-362nd Division1737 
1934-352nd Division1934 
1933-342nd Division1438 
1932-332nd Division1241 
1931-322nd Division1441 
1930-312nd Division944 
1929-302nd Division745 
1928-292nd Division448 
1927-282nd Division1735 
1926-272nd Division1342 
1925-262nd Division1438 
1924-252nd Division744 
1923-242nd Division548 
1922-232nd Division1142 
1921-223rd Division S161Promoted
1920-213rd Division254 

Club Net Worth

Southampton F.C’s current market value is £216.18m. That translates to $299.32m and €254.08m.

This figure is accurate from August 2021. 

The squad size is 27, with an average age of 25.5. 8 of the players are part of the national team. 

The current transfer record is £+24.12m. That translates to €+28.35m and $+33.4m.


St Mary’s Stadium is a complete bowl with all the stands sitting at equal height. There are two large screens at either end of the building so they can be seen from any seat chosen.

The stadium has four stands. Each stand is named after a different part of Southampton. The main stand or east stand is called Itchen Stand as it faces the River Itchen.

The opposite stand is called Kingsland Stand. Behind the south goal, the stand is named Chapel Stand, and the last stand is called Northam Stand.

Chapel, Kingsland, and Northam Stand all have a translucent panel designed to allow in natural light across the pitch. This is the same reason for the Chapel stand’s translucent roof.


Gao Jisheng is the current owner of the Southampton Football Club. He completed the multi-million pound take over in August 2017, managing to take 80% of the stake for around £210m. That translates to $290.76m and €246.92.

As you can imagine, this deal was not taken lightly. In total, it took more than 12 months for Jisheng and the Saints to complete the sale. Gao came over in person with his daughter Nelly to seal the deal. 

Best Players

The best players in Southampton are James Ward Prowse, Che Adams, and Jan Bednark.

James Ward Prowse is Southampton’s number one player when it comes to freekicks. He is ranked 37th in the premier league for his 8 goals scored. He is 29th for his 23 shots on target. James is also the second-best in the premier league for assists!

Che Adams is the second-best player in the premier league when it comes to free kicks and the 4th best when it comes to tackling players on the opponent’s half. With 32 shots on target, Adams is 14th in the premier league for this category. 

Dan Bednarek is a defender and comes in at 2nd place in the premier league for pass interceptions. He was also in 2nd place for passing interpretation on his own half. Bednarek is in 3rd place for Aerial Duels in his own half and 5th place for tackles in his own half!

All Time Top Scorer

Mick Channon is Southampton’s leading all time scorer. He has scored 227 goals in his 607 career appearances. Channon was with Southampton on two different occasions; from 1965 – 1977 and again two years later from 1979 – 1982. 

In the two year gap, Channon left the Saints for Manchester City. At that point in time, Southampton was in the Second Division, whereas Manchester City was in the First.

Channon found that Manchester City had limited opportunities available for him, and in the same breath, Southampton had climbed up to First Division. This persuaded Channon to rejoin the Saints for another 3 years.

After that, he bounced around different clubs until retiring in 1987.


James Ward Prowse is Southampton’s captain. He has been in 315 matches to date, 270 of them in the premier league. He has scored 33 goals across 1 season. 

His total stats are as follows:



Southampton has three goalkeepers. Alex McCarthy, Harry Lewis, and Fraser Forster.

Alex McCarthy made his football league debut as a 19 year old playing for Alderton Town at Brentford. He was loaned to Yeovil Town for a year, but that transfer allowed him to play 44 league games and keep 12 clean sheets. 

After starting in 2008 – 2009, it took McCarthy a long time to become a Saint, only coming over in 2015. His first appearance with Southampton was in August 2016, where he kept a clean sheet at a 0 – 0  draw against Manchester United Away.

Harry Lewis graduated from Saints Academy and jumped straight into the first team in January 2017. Lewis was put on a one year loan to Dundee United. In Scotland, he played 39 times and came in third in the Scottish Championship.

Fraser Forster is a seasoned goalkeeper playing for the England squad for the first time in 2012. 


Southampton has 6 defenders;  Kyle Walker Peters, Jack Stephens, Tino Livramento, Mohammed Salisu, Jan Bednarek, and Yan Valery. 

Yan Valery joined the Saints when he was 16, having shown off an impressive performance in the Rennes tournament. The move was scheduled for 2015 where Valery made a brave decision to leave his home in Paris to develop his career in England.

Jan Bednarek signed for Southampton in 2017, securing a 5 year deal, however, we didn’t get to see him play until April 2018. Bednarek arrived with a bang helping to score a 3 – 2 defeating Chelsea.

Mohammed Salisu had an unlikely start to the Premier League. He joined the African Talent Football Academy when a Spanish scout spotted potential in this defender. Salisu almost didn’t even play in this match until he managed to borrow an ill-fitting pair of boots from a goalkeeper.

During all the commotion, Salisu didn’t realize that a scout was watching but still managed to impress the Spaniard so much that he joined Valladolid’s academy.


The Saints have 6 strikers; Shane Long, Adam Armstrong, Che Adams, Michael Obafemi, Armando Broja, and Mohamed Elyounoussi.

Check out their stats for Southampton below.

Mohamed Elyounoussi:


Armando Broja:

Yet to play.

Michael Obafemi:


Che Adams:


Adam Armstrong


Shane Long:



Ralph Hasenbuttl currently manages Southampton Football Club. He became manager in December 2018. Since joining, the team has played in 114 games; 42 they have won, 23 they have drawn, and 49 they have lost.

Previously Hasenbuttl managed RB Leipzig and Ingolstadt. Ingolstadt did not have a great record under his management, earning 11 wins, 19 draws, and 26 losses.  However, RB Leipzig was much more successful, earning 41 wins, 19 draws, and just 23 losses.


Ralph Hasenbuttl is Southampton’s coach. He started his coaching career in 2004 – 2005 for SpVgg Unterhaching. He earned the title of head coach just 2 – 3 years later, and in his first match, the team scored a 2 – 2 draw.

Assistant Coach

Craig Fleming is Southampton’s first team assistant coach. He started his football career in Halifax Town, which was his hometown club. He was a defender just aged 16.

During 2004 – 2005’s Premier League season Fleming played every minute of every game for Norwich. He appeared 38 times that season, earning bragging rights to the most minutes on the pitch.

In 2015, Fleming began his coaching career, starting with Lowestoft Town. It didn’t take him long to join the Saints Academy under 18s and then progress to the under 23s in the summer of 2018.

Home Kit

Southampton’s home kit is red and white stripes, with delicate arrows pointing in opposite directions up and down the shirt. The shoulders are red, and the lines are defined with sharp black borders.

Away Kit

The away kit doesn’t have the same subtle arrows, instead, the designers have added an almost unnoticeable flutter or flames that start from the bottom of the top and climb to the chest.

The colors are yellow, with blue shoulders and slightly orange flames.

Southampton’s logo isn’t a shield like most. Starting from the bottom, the words “SOUTHAMPTON” are yellow, bordered around a black block.

The block curls up around the almost square main design. In this design, there is a yellow flower with white petals and a red background.

Then there are blue waves. Sitting on the waves is a luscious tree on a white background.

Above the tree waving over the square’s border is a red and white scarf. Nesting on the scarf is a football, and crowned on the football is a halo.

Club Academy

The Saint’s vision is to create the first team that has a year on year collection of 50% Academy Graduates on the first team. Southampton wants to raise and perform with their own child to adult team while keeping their world class technical ability.

Southampton Academy has already created world class players and developed them from a young age, so they are well on their way to achieving this vision.

League Titles

Football League Division One / Premier League

  • Runners-Up – 1983-1984

Football League Division Two / Football League Championship

  • Runners-Up – 1965-1966
  • Runners-Up – 1977-1978
  • Runners-Up – 2011-2012

Football League Division Three / Football League One

  • Runners-Up – 1920-1921
  • Champions – 1959-1960
  • Runners-Up – 2010-2011

Football League Third Division South

  • Champions – 1921-1922

Southern League

  • Champions – 1896-1897
  • Champions – 1897-1898
  • Champions – 1898-1899
  • Champions – 1900-1901
  • Champions – 1902-1903
  • Champions – 1903-1904

Western League

  • Runners-Up – 1903-1904
  • Runners-Up – 1905-1906
  • Runners-Up – 1907-1908
  • Section A Winners – 1907-1908

League Cup

  • Runners-Up – 1978-1979
  • Runners-Up – 2016-2017

FA Cup

  • Runners-Up – 1899-1900
  • Runners-Up – 1901-1902
  • Winner – 1975-1976
  • Runners-Up – 2002-2003

Full Members Cup

  • Runners-Up – 1991-1992

FA Community Shield

  • Runners-Up – 1976

Football League Trophy

  • Winner – 2009-2010

Texaco Cup

  • Runners-Up – 1974-1975

Anglo-Italian League Cup

  • Runners-Up – 1976

Anglo-Franco Friendship Cup

  • Joint Winners – 1961-1962

Hampshire Senior Cup

  • Winner – 1890-1891
  • Winner – 1891-1892
  • Runners-Up – 1892-1893
  • Runners-Up – 1893-1894
  • Winner – 1894-1895
  • Runners-Up – 1895-1896

National Fives Tournament

  • Winner – 1971
  • Runners-Up – 1981
  • Winner – 1983

London Fives  Tournament

  • Runners-Up – 1972