Date: 10th March 2015 at 9:16pm
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Former manager Paulo Sousa says he regrets leaving Swansea City and not seeing the top flight potential in the club.

Sousa, now in charge at Basel, admitted that it was his ambition that pushed him to join Leicester City, who he thought had more potential and ‘higher prospects’ to reach the Premier League.

It didn’t work out at Leicester, and was soon sacked after a poor start to the Championship season.

You could arguably say that Sousa has almost been left out when anyone looks back at Swansea’s rise through the divisions to reach the Premier League.

Some fans recognise the qualities he brought to the club – mainly how he vastly improved our defence – which looked vulnerable to say the least under his predecessor Roberto Martinez.

At the time, Sousa guided the Swans to their highest League position – 7th in the Championship – just missing out on the play-offs.

The football was boring and frustrating to watch, and while we often kept clean sheets – thanks to our defensive quality, we lacked attacking creativity to score just that one goal we often needed to win games.

Current boss Garry Monk was hardly a fan of his former boss. He was very critical of him in his autobiography. He didn’t want him to be the man to take the Swans up into the Premier League – because he didn’t deserve the glory. It was a ‘wasted season’ under Sousa according to Monk.

Looking back, it’s harsh to say the least. He came in to new surroundings, prioritised improving a leaky defence, and despite lacking attacking quality, his team still managed to finish 7th.

You also can’t forget that the solid defensive foundations he laid played a big part the following season, when Brendan Rodgers came in and got Swansea promoted via 6th place in the play-offs.

Talking about Monk, Sousa was obviously not happy to read Monk’s comments – and that he didn’t confront him personally to discuss his views.

“Look, he’s a person I want to succeed, like everyone. But unfortunately he said things about me and I don’t appreciate people talking about somebody when they don’t have the courage to say it up front,”

“He is well integrated in the club, but the key for success at Swansea is the leadership of (Huw) Jenkins and the support of the board members, not one manager.”

‘When I left Swansea, my ambition pushed me to take decisions in the direction of better infrastructures, better club history and higher prospects to reach the Premier League,”

‘Instead of seeing the whole forest, I saw only the beautiful tree in front of me. Swansea has lots of beautiful trees, but at that moment I didn’t recognise that. That I regret.’


Whatever you might think about Sousa, he’s not doing too badly now – he’s managing Basel in the Champions’ League – something Monk will surely aspire to do some time in the future.

 
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