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The Saints boss has dismissed claims he is indebted to the current Newcastle coach after he laid the foundations for the club's success, but says he will be welcomed at St Mary's

Southampton boss Nigel Adkins has rejected claims he owes Alan Pardew ahead of his side’s clash with Newcastle this weekend.

Pardew, now Newcastle manager, was in charge at St Mary’s before Adkins took over and was responsible for singing a number of key players – most notably Rickie Lambert – who still turn out for the Saints today.

However, Adkins does not believe he owes Pardew a debt of gratitude and was keen to emphasise that any recent Southampton success has been down to his own personal stamp of authority.

“I don’t think I owe him any debt of gratitude at all,” Adkins told reporters. “Whatever situation arose, he moved on. I am the manager of Southampton Football Club.
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“We’ve just had back-to-back promotions, we’re doing ever so well in our forward progression.”

Adkins also stated that Pardew will not receive any special treatment but will be welcomed back to St Mary’s Stadium the same as any other manager who has visited this season.

He added:  “We always welcome the opposition manager, whoever it is, to St Mary’s.

“When the whistle blows, then it is go to win a game of football.

“Afterwards we always invite them in for a drink. We’ve done that consistently. It doesn’t matter who the manager is, that is what we’ve always done and what we will continue to do.”

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