"I feel so sorry to leave the club in this situation, but when you don't get results I understand the decision the club has to take".
The latest 3-0 defeat at relegation rivals Newcastle on Saturday proved to be the final straw for the Southampton hierarchy, with the club in danger of being relegated from the top flight for the first time since being promoted in 2012.
Eight games to the end of the season, relegation threatened Southampton football club of England have parted ways with their head coach, Mauricio Pellegrino.
Mark Hughes has been named as the "leading candidate" for the vacant Southampton manager's position, not Marco Silva.
Pellegrino was hired on a three-year deal in June 2017, after Claude Puel was dismissed. Hughes has never been relegated as a Premier League manager and with his former club Stoke also in the PL relegation battle with Saints, it may be a way to show his former employers what they're missing.
The struggling south coast side, 17th, are now keen to appoint a manager with Premier League experience who can come in ahead of Sunday's FA Cup quarter-final clash away to League One side Wigan.
He has also managed Wales, Manchester City, Blackburn Rovers Fulham and Queens Park Rangers - and is behind only Arsène Wenger, Sir Alex Ferguson, Harry Redknapp, David Moyes and Sam Allardye on the list of most Premier League games. Hughes is well known to be a "players' coach" and could inspire a complete shakeup at St Mary's in the final months of the season. At this point they will do whatever they can to secure their Premier League status.
Hughes, 54, has been out of work since being axed by Stoke in January.