Saturday 29 July 2017

Everton confident of securing Sigurdsson as playmaker’s departure looms large

Everton remain confident of landing Swansea City midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson, despite seeing a second bid of around £45 million rejected, according to the Liverpool Echo.
The Toffees are aggressively pursuing the Icelandic playmaker thanks to a cash influx from selling Romelu Lukaku to Manchester United, but the Welsh club are determined to hold out for £50 million for their star man.
The 27-year-old was not included in Swansea’s squad for the tour of America and has been training with the club’s under-23s squad because he is not in the “right frame of mind.”
Sigurdsson has reportedly informed the club of his desire to join Ronald Koeman’s side and it’s increasingly looking like his second departure from the club (he left for Tottenham Hotspur in 2012) is a matter of when, not if.
Discussion over the player’s future are thought to be a major priority for Swansea this week after they returned to pre-season on Wednesday. It remains to be seen whether Swansea boss Paul Clement includes Sigurdsson for the club’s friendly against Birmingham City on Saturday.

Friday 28 July 2017

Swansea face competition for Bony

Swansea City face competition from Marseille for striker Wilfried Bony, according to recent reports.
The Swans were granted permission by Manchester City to speak to Bony following the Ivorian forward’s lack of impact at the Etihad Stadium, but there are suggestions that the player favours a move to France over a return to the club where he established himself as one of the Premier League’s deadliest marksmen.
French outlet La Provence have claimed that talks have already taken place between the Ligue 1 outfit and Bony’s representatives, so it looks like Swansea must act swiftly if they are to edge other potential suitors.
Swansea boss Paul Clement is keen to recruit a striker as Fernando Llorente’s future remains unclear. The club’s top-scorer last season has been heavily linked with a move to Chelsea and, although the Blues bought Alvaro Morata for £58 million last week, it is suggested that Antonio Conte retains interest in Llorente.
Bony scored 35 goals in 70 games for Swansea between 2013-15 before joining Manchester City in a £25 million deal, where he has failed to replicate such a rate, with 10 strikes in 46 appearances.
Pep Guardiola is desperate to get Bony off City’s books, particularly now after the club’s £200 splash on players this summer. A return to Swansea is very much a possibility, but the club must act decisively in order to keep the 28-year-old in the Premier League.

Thursday 27 July 2017

Former Swansea striker Michu pens heartfelt statement after retiring at 31

For a while, no Swan moved as gracefully as Michu. Following the departure of Gylfi Sigurdsson (something the club is actively trying to avoid this summer) in 2012, the club paid a modest £2million to acquire the services of the relatively-unknown forward.

Although expectations were modest, Michu scored twice on his debut in a thumping 5-0 win over Queens Park Rangers and the rest, as they say, was history. Unfortunately, now so is Michu. Yes, the floppy haired Spaniard who once captured the hearts and minds of the Liberty Stadium faithful, has been forced to retire at the age of 31.

Michu confirmed Thursday that a persistent ankle injury has forced him to hang up his boots.
In a heartfelt statement, he said: “According to medical reports, the current situation of my right ankle has come to a point where it has forced me to say goodbye as a professional football player today," Michu said in a statement on his Twitter account.

"Even though I am saying farewell to you with so much sorrow, I know that we will always be united. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the magical moments that you have given to me during all this time.

"I feel privileged to have fulfilled a dream that is shared by so many of us since childhood. The dream of becoming a professional player in this sport.

"Because of you, the public have given me an invaluable affection that I will never be able to repay. Indeed, I feel I have done nothing to deserve it all."

While Michu was unable to make much of an impact at Real Oviedo, Swansea fans will forever remember him as the clinical finisher who sunk Arsenal at the Emirates, who scored both home and away against Manchester United and ended the 2012/13 season with 22 goals, making him one of the finest bargains of the Premier League era.

Of course, he also played a pivotal role in catapulting Michael Laudrup’s side to the club’s first major honour – the Capital One Cup, with Michu scoring in the 5-0 final win over Bradford City. However, injury curtailed his progress and he featured sparingly in the second season, before a fruitless loan spell at Napoli.

In the classy statement, Michu added: “Before I conclude, I would like to tell you that I consider myself an honest guy, thanks to the education I received from my family and that I have always tried to do my very best for every club that you have lead me to. I wholeheartedly apologise if, at any point, my acts may have upset any of your supporters, who love you madly as I do.”

That’s how to sign off, folks.

Thursday 29 June 2017

Leon Britton Deal is Great News for Swans and Player's Future

News of Leon Britton signing a year’s contract extension with the Swans is excellent news.

Britton is undoubtedly a club legend having played over 520 games for the club and remains key figure even if his appearances are limited. The 34-year-old first ran out for the swans some 16-years ago during a loan spell before signing permanently in 2003. The midfielder then of course spent seven memorable years with the Jacks before leaving for Sheffield United.

However, Britton didn’t stay away that easily and just a year later, returned and was part of the Swans’ great rise to the Premier League, the rest is history. The Englishman made just 18 appearances last season but played a key part in that end of season run in where the Jacks went five games unbeaten to retain a top flight status. Still a great passer of the ball and excellent at winning it back, Britton is the perfect experienced player to keep heads calm when trying to hang on for the win and it’s no surprise that he’s looking to go into coaching for there is no-one more suited.
Of his contract extension, Britton said: “I am very happy. Everyone knows how much the club means to me.

"I just spoke with the chairman and it was just a five-minute conversation phone call and everything was agreed."

Britton has already started his coaching badges and the new deal guarantees Britton a coaching role with the Jacks following his retirement from playing. The 34-year-old has been completing his coaching badges with the Football Association of Wales.
The new deal also guarantees Britton a coaching role at Swansea after he retires from playing. He has been doing his coaching badges with the Football Association of Wales.

He said: “It (coaching) is something I spoke to the chairman and manager about. There is maybe an opportunity when I decide to finish my playing time at Swansea the club will keep me on in some capacity.

"It is still something to speak about later on down the line but we have had discussions about. At the moment I am focusing on the football side of things and when that finishes we will sit down and see what the club are thinking.

"I have done the B licence and the A licence with the FAW the season just gone."

Huw Jenkins recognised his services. The chairman paid tribute to our beloved club stalwart: "Leon has been and still is a fantastic servant to this football club," said Jenkins. 

"He is a model pro and we are very proud he is representing Swansea City. I hope this new contract paves the way for Leon to remain with us for many more years to come.

"He has made a tremendous contribution to this club, both on and off the pitch, over the last 15 years."

It would be excellent to see Britton’s services recognised even further with a testimonial somewhere down the line.