Swansea City fans were left devastated this week by the news of Graham Potter’s departure to Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion but chairman Trevor Birch has released a more encouraging statement to ensure fans of his Summer plans.
As we said in a recent article below, the Swans now need to “push the full reset button” and that means recruiting a new coaching team, scouting and recruitment setup as well as inevitable replacing some players who are likely to leave during the transfer window.
Whilst chairman Trevor Birch has insisted that there will not be a number of players sold before the start of the new season as per the fans’ main concerns following Potter’s departure, there is plenty of speculation linking clubs with our star players. The club is waiting for Manchester United to meet their £20m asking price for Dan James, there’s growing interest in Oli McBurnie and there are doubts regarding captain Mike van der Hoorn’s future with suggestions that his one-year extension was triggered simply to ensure that we wouldn’t lose him for free this year. Out of contract Leroy Fer, Martin Olsson and Luciano Narsingh won’t be given new deals but Birch also gave good news to fans regarding Wayne Routledge, who he hopes can reach an agreement over a new contract on reduced terms.
“On a more positive note I met with Wayne Routledge yesterday and had a very good conversation with him about re-signing for the forthcoming season.”
“He’s an extremely articulate and intelligent man and has a great future ahead of him after he’s finished playing. But I am extremely hopeful that we can retain him for a further year as a player first as his experience and maturity will be of great benefit in the dressing room with the younger players going forward.”
Hopefully we will have some good news on Wayne’s future very soon.”
On the new manager front, Birch revealed that he has “already had a significant number of applications from around the world; but that’s not surprising as it is an attractive job and the amount of interest at this early stage is testament to the club’s pulling power.”
Birch also addressed the recruitment and scouting situation and that he will be looking to appoint a new Head of Recruitment and “build a robust scouting structure”.
To do that, he will look to get the help from “professional recruiters” and is hopeful that it will be a quick process.
There was also good news for fans to hear that former player and club legend Leon Britton will have a new role at the club, going from a club ambassador to Football Advisor to the board of directors. Club President and fellow legend Alan Curtis will also be involved in that recruitment board who will be involved in reviewing and assessing candidates to assist Birch in interviewing and selecting the new manager.
The worry for fans has been how we would go about looking for Graham Potter’s successor. The American owners can’t be trusted and with Birch too, they lack recent experience in that process. Alan Curtis and Leon Britton also lack experience too, but they’ve see a large number of managers come and go, they understand the playing style philosophy, ensuring that the new manager will fit in with what we’re trying to do.
Not only the process of looking for the new manager, Birch also confirmed that this board will also assist in future player recruitment.
In his statement, Birch said:
“This board, together with the new Head of Recruitment, will also assist in future player recruitment. Alan and Leon know more than anyone what this club is all about, so their knowledge and advice will be invaluable.”
The bottom line here though is that these are all just words at the end of the day. They sound encouraging and positive – better than anything we’ve heard recently but let’s just hope that the actions that follow match his statement.
Excellent statement. https://t.co/2tcfMpADdv
— CroJack (@CroJack2) May 21, 2019
— Gareth Thomas (@musicgareth) May 21, 2019
One of best chairmen statements I've ever seen. Could be all smoke and mirrors of course but it's clear, concise but detailed in key areas and mentions clear ideology especially referencing the Swansea way. Interesting times at the Liberty. Chance to capitalise if they are clever https://t.co/C1f9sVm4Ch
— Blades Analytics (@Blades_analytic) May 21, 2019
I have to give credit here. I agree with what Birch is saying and this is a step in the right direction with regards to communication, which has been abysmal since the club was taken over. https://t.co/RlbhfkBpi8
— Steven Carroll (@StevenSOS1987) May 21, 2019
Decent words from Birch. No doubt there will be plenty who disbelieve every syllable but I've not seen anything that makes me think that what he's saying isn't genuine.
If he can get anything near £20m for Dan James too then that's a right result.
— Swansea Snapper (@JCJJMB) May 21, 2019