Swansea City issued a rare update from the board today on the official website regarding the big changes they’re making to their player recruitment system.
The existing recruitment and scouting system has been flawed to say the very least for years now, with chairman and de facto Director of Football Huw Jenkins’ involvement being the main reason for its failure – which significantly contributed to our downfall in the last 3 years.
It has inevitably resulted in relegation from the Premier League, and the club have finally seen the light and made some big and much-needed changes. Following yesterday’s news that Alan Curtis returned to the coaching setup, today’s news that Graham Potter and his staff will take over the responsibility of identifying transfer targets is also most welcomed.
Some fans have been cynical about the news however. The “update” from the board is one to mainly ignore. It’s full of the usual waffling rubbish and buzzwords that we’ve all heard before, but the critical fact from it is that at long last, the manager and his own staff – chosen by Potter himself – will identify players to sign themselves. This is something that hasn’t happened since Michael Laudrup was manager four years ago.
Some fans still moaning after our entire coaching team has been finally sacked. Have I missed something?
Isn't this great news? (Yes I know HJ remains but it's a start)
— Vital Swansea (@VitalSwansea) June 28, 2018
Some supporters may be sceptical that this will actually be the case, and the root of the problem still remains – that is Huw Jenkins, but while he still remains as our chairman, hopefully at the very least he’ll stay well clear of player recruitment. Whether he actually does or not, we’ll have to find out over the next month or so.
The official site explained the role of our new Head of Recruitment Kyle Macaulay who worked with Graham Potter at Ostersund, saying “While Potter will have the final say on whether players are recruited or not, it will be Macaulay who is charged with heading up the day-to-day recruitment process.
It will see the 32-year-old former Aberdeen midfielder identify key targets and provide recommendations for the Swans boss to help strengthen his options.”
Talking about his role at Swansea City, Kyle Macaulay said:
“We will have a small team and they will have different strengths. I want them to see Graham and work with him regularly rather than be based outside of the club. I want them to see training sessions and the feedback players get.”
Macaulay also said that he’ll have a busy schedule watching matches live to identify targets:
“We have a good network of informal contacts here, but you can’t beat getting to stadiums and watching matches live. My week will involve watching games on Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday.
“I won’t get to watch Swansea play live much, so I’ll have extra games to look back through on top of the ones I’ll be at.
“But that’s part of the job, and I’ll do whatever I can to help Graham, the team and the club.”
According to BBC Sport, the club have removed their entire scouting team as head of recruitment Dave Leadbeater has been replaced by Kyle Macaulay.
Technical recruitment scout Ian Henderson and assistant Ian Roscrow, Brian Flynn and former goalkeeper Gerhard Tremmel will also leave their roles.
The board’s update explained how the responsibilities will be shared:
“Graham will decide which areas of the team or squad need strengthening,”
“Kyle will identify the key targets, research and study all the available information including scouting reports and data before providing a list to be pursued.”
Swansea City fans want to see some signings coming in now but they’re not progressing player sales quick enough. Defensive duo Alfie Mawson and Federico Fernandez are expected to leave to free up wages and bring in some much-needed money, but it’s been mentioned that signings won’t be made until others depart. It’s also thought that Graham Potter wants to assess his squad in training before making decisions on which areas most need strengthening.
It’s fair to say then that the new recruitment team will have to work fast ahead of the new season kick off which is only just over a month away on August 4th.