Nathan Jones came out fighting after Southampton’s fans turned on him during the 3-0 defeat at Brentford, vowing to stamp his authority on the club.
The Saints boss, appointed in November to steer them away from relegation, faced chants of ‘you’re getting sacked in the morning’ and ‘get out of our club’ after they were left rooted to the foot of the table.
Afterwards a fired-up Jones claimed he had “compromised his principles” since joining Southampton from Luton, and that from now on he would “live or die by my own philosophy”.
“I’ve compromised,” he said. “I’ve compromised certain principles because of, one; personnel, but, two; the way people want to play and so on, because of fans and so on,
“I’ve compromised on a few little things, but no more because I’ve been very successful. Now I will live and die by my own philosophy.
“I’ve gone away from what brought me to this football club and I’m not going to do it again.”
Saints were 2-0 down at half-time thanks to Ben Mee’s brave header and Bryan Mbeumo’s close-range finish.
It was when Mathias Jensen headed the third 10 minutes from time that the scorn began to pour down from the away end.
“Fans saw a performance here that justified what they were saying,” added Jones.
“All I can say is, I totally understand. They’re entitled to their opinion and I’ve got broad shoulders so I will take everything on myself.
“I look at myself in the mirror and, to be honest, I can be better.”
Asked if he felt he would be given time to implement his own philosophies, Jones replied: “I don’t know. That’s not a question for me, but I hope so.
“This team is good enough to stay up but the same things that have been happening for a year are still happening.”
Victory moved Brentford up to seventh and their fans are dreaming of the possibility of European football.
“I am a dreamer,” said boss Thomas Frank. “But I’m so conscious about this relentless league.
“Three injuries to thee players and you are talking different scenarios.
“We will use the confidence and belief, but still be humble. We need to work hard to stay in the position we’re in.
“The first half was maybe the most complete performance this season.
“In the second half at 2-0 the other team always come out and have a go, but I can’t remember a big chance they had.
“Every player out there is in a fantastic place.”