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FOOTBALL

Woodward confirmed in soccer role

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Woodward aims to beat the All Blacks before turning his attentions to soccer

SOUTHAMPTON, England -- England rugby union World Cup winning coach Sir Clive Woodward was on Monday confirmed as Southampton soccer club's new technical director.

"He is coming in to learn. He's coming in to pick people's brains and I'm happy with that. But I am the manager and I pick the team and recommend the players," Southampton manager Harry Redknapp said.

Woodward currently has more pressing problems as coach of the British and Irish Lions' who on Saturday bid to avoid another mauling by the All Blacks.

Redknapp said that Woodward will not be involved with the first team day-to-day.

"He wants to look and learn the game and see where it takes him. The bottom line is that he wants to be a manager one day," he said.

Redknapp meanwhile is preoccupied with reshaping his team ahead of the new season following relegation from the Premiership.

The former Portsmouth coach is determined to keep England striker Peter Crouch and would regard it as a bonus if goalkeeper Antti Niemi and midfielders Scottish international Nigel Quashie and Ireland international Rory Delap stayed on as well.

Crouch arrived for training Monday despite being linked with Liverpool, who are believed to have had a five million pound bid turned down, plus Manchester City and West Ham.

Redknapp has branded a minority of his squad "useless" but admitted it was proving hard work to offload those players.

"The sad part is that the ones who do well want to go, but you cannot move the ones who are useless," said Redknapp.

"Ninety per cent here are good lads with a good attitude but there are always that few around who are quite happy to make their money and do very little for it.

"I would like to be able to shift a few and then bring in a few new faces before the season starts."

Redknapp's two signings so far this summer have been Millwall's 39-year-old former player-manager Dennis Wise and Crystal Palace's Darren Powell.

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