Swansea City made their third Summer signing this weekend with the arrival of 19-year-old Sunderland winger/striker Joel Asoro for a £2m fee but while fans are happy to see us bringing in young talent, they’re still wondering if we’ll add experience to the squad within the next few weeks.
Our three signings so far are all 19 years’ of age, Yan Dhanda, Jordi Govea and Joel Asoro, so it’s understandable for fans to have their concerns over a lack of experience within the squad, especially when a large number of established senior players are expected to leave before the transfer window closes.
Looking through the positions, we’ve lost our number 1 goalkeeper Lucasz Fabianski. In defence, Alfie Mawson could join West Ham, Federico Fernandez is likely to leave and has expressed a desire to play at a higher level, and Kyle Bartley will join West Brom. That leaves us with Mike van der Hoorn and Jordi Amat, with younger players also available as back-up.
In midfield, we’ve seen Ki Sung Yeung and Leon Britton leave. Sam Clucas has recently been linked with a £12m bid from Burnley and Leroy Fer won’t be back in action until September. In the middle then, that leaves us with the likes of Matt Grimes, Tom Carroll, George Byers and Yan Dhanda, with Dan James, Joel Assoro, Luciano Narsingh, Wayne Routledge and Nathan Dyer available out wide.
Up front, both Ayew brothers have been linked with moves away and it would be somewhat of a surprise to see them both here come the start of August. Andre is close to a season-long loan move, while Jordan was the subject of a rejected £8m bid from Fulham. Oli McBurnie is our only current fit striker, with Wilfried Bony expressing his desire to stay but he’s still recovering from injury.
I was optimistic at the start with Potter, because I honestly thought they would back him. But now it’s looking very unlikely we’ll bring in the quality to freshen up the squad. And that could include a few still going out. My worry is they will put fro much faith in the youth.
— Daniel James (@DanielJJames2) July 14, 2018
Federico Fernandez recently revealed that the club’s “idea” was to mix the youngsters with experience, but so far we’ve yet to see that. The Swans have raised around £12-13m in transfer fees and Bartley is expected to join West Brom for a fee of £7m. That total could be doubled if Alfie Mawson is sold so the Swans should have some money to spend on new players.
It’s clear to see that the club desperately need to reduce a £99m Premier League wage bill by selling the highest earners and then replacing them by spending much lower fees than what they’ll receive. So far we can only hope that the club make that idea of mixing experience with young talent a reality, but it’s fair to say that they’re pushed for time.
I had hoped that most of our highest earners would have been sold by now, allowing us to raise funds early giving us time to build an adequate squad for the Championship. There’s no doubting that there’s some talent in the squad. Some supporters were calling out for our stand-out performers in the under-23s to be given a chance last season, and it looks like that’ll happen in 2018/19. George Byers, Oli McBurnie and Aaron Lewis have signed new contracts and Dan James also impressed during our first pre-season friendly at Yeovil.
Yan Dhanda also scored at Huish Park and Joel Asoro is well-known for his lightning pace, so it definitely looks like Potter is trying to build a more positive and attacking side – one that will play with pace and flair – something that we’ve not been used to seeing over the last few years.
But that needs to be mixed with experience. Players for the youngsters to look up to. A number of them have barely experienced football at Championship level and they’ll need some leaders out there. The Championship is one tough division and it’s a long, 46-game season.
Agreed, it’s a positive step. I think the ‘senior’ signings will be dependent on who leaves in the next couple of weeks.
There’s not been as much movement as I thought there’d be at the start of July. Might have a better idea when they go on tour on Thursday.
— Jack Swan (@jackswan1411) July 14, 2018