Russell Martin vowed to lead Southampton back to the Premier League after being hired as the relegated club’s new manager on Wednesday.
Martin has moved to Southampton from fellow Championship side Swansea on a three-year contract.
The 37-year-old oversaw Swansea’s 10th place finish in the Championship last season and has been entrusted with the task of lifting the Saints back into the top-flight.
“It’s a privilege to accept this opportunity at Southampton, a club with such a long and rich history,” Martin said.
“My aim is to get this club back where it belongs, in the top flight of English football.
“I am ready for this challenge and will give everything to achieve this aim and to give the supporters a team that makes them proud. I’m thrilled to be here and cannot wait for the work to begin.”
Martin, who spent two years with Swansea after starting his managerial career at Milton Keynes Dons, replaces Ruben Selles at St Mary’s following the Spaniard’s sacking at the end of the season.
Selles was Southampton’s third manager of a troubled campaign that featured the dismissal of Ralph Hasenhuttl in November and the exit of Nathan Jones in February after just 14 games.
It is understood former Scotland and Norwich defender Martin had agreed to become Southampton boss in May, but the move was held up by a dispute over the amount of compensation due to Swansea.
Leicester, also relegated from the Premier League this season, were interested in Martin, but Southampton secured his signature as they target promotion in their first Championship season since 2012.
“Russell was the stand-out candidate throughout our recruitment process,” Southampton chairman Henrik Kraft said.
Jason Wilcox agreed to join Southampton as director of football in January, but officially starts work next week as he prepares to link up with Martin.
“Russell has shown fantastic qualities in his managerial career so far and is someone who we believe will thrive in the great environment we have here at Southampton,” Wilcox said.
“He is a fantastic fit for what we are trying to achieve, with a strong record of developing and nurturing young, talented players to fulfil their potential and deliver results on the pitch.”