Ralph Hasenhuttl’s Saints era starts today – and he has a lot to do.

There is little question that his appointment has excited Saints fans who have taken the time to read about him.

The Austrian, nicknamed ‘Klopp of the Alps’ for the style of his sides, is well known in Germany for playing high pressing, high tempo, attacking football.

It is exactly what Saints fans want to see.

The mid-season timing and manner of the appointment is a throwback to the recruitment of Mauricio Pochettino, and the way Saints played under his leadership was a joy to watch.

If Hasenhuttl can deliver on the hype then Saints fans are in for an exciting ride.

The decision from Ralph Krueger and Ross Wilson to go for Hasenhuttl after sweeping away Les Reed, Martin Hunter and then Mark Hughes is also surely an attempt to draw a line in the sand and forcefully usher in a new era for the club.

It feels like a statement of ‘let’s get back to what we were about.’ It is needed too as Saints have really lost their way, not just on the pitch but off it as well.

However, it would be prudent to also issue a word of caution.

We heard great things about previous managers whose appointments didn’t work out and, ultimately, Hasenhuttl will live or die by the achievements of his players.

He walks into a dressing room low on confidence and belief and riddled with problems that have brought about the demise of three managers in less than 18 months.

Does Hasenhuttl actually have the players to get Saints flowing in his trademark style?

Can he expect to implement such a demanding new regime in the middle of a season where the club are struggling so badly?

And, if he can’t do so quickly, and in a hectic run of fixtures opts for stability, will people have the patience to stick with him?

In short, was this an appointment for a summer rather than mid-season, and is it the correct order to bring a new manager before a director of football?

Time will tell, of course.

But what’s for sure is that there won’t be much money to spend in January, results have to turn around very quickly indeed if Saints aren’t to be cut adrift and the background noise of questions over ownership and the general direction of the club rumble on.

For all of that, this does feel like a positive move from Saints, and credit to them for that.

It is a gamble, but maybe they have calculated taking a risk on their own terms, doing things their way, is the best way to go and will provide solace however it works out.