So, as we all know by now, Paul Clement has been sacked and Swansea City are on the hunt for a new manager for the fourth time in two years.
If that’s not concerning for a football club, I don’t know what is. The problems obviously lay deeper than the managers with Huw Jenkins and the American owners unfit to run a Premier League football club. It’s no coincidence that the previous four managers have all failed!
What can any manager do with a squad like we have? What can any manager do when the board are selling your best players and not replacing them? I do feel sorry for Clement, however at the same time I also believe that sacking him was ultimately the right decision.
Clement was hard done by in the transfer market and had to make-do with a largely Championship quality squad of players, although he simply did not help himself.
The negative football at times was unbearable to watch and the inability to set up a team to attack and ‘go for it’ was not the Swansea way – though that’s been gone for some time.
At the start, Clement came in and had a massive impact. The type of impact a new manager coming into a struggling club often has – everyone seems rejuvenated and raring to go. This was evident in the 3-2 win at Anfield against Liverpool in his second game in charge and then from there the Swans gained momentum to mount a genuine survival bid.
You’d be a fool to ignore that Carlo Ancelotti’s former assistant did an incredible job keeping us up after the mess that we found ourselves in after Bob Bradley’s tenure, sitting rock-bottom of the Premier League. He manufactured some vitals wins against Burnley, Leicester, Southampton and then obviously the last five games of 2016/17 where we won four and secured top-flight football for a seventh successive season.
Clement had an excuse to play defensively last season because we simply had to treat every game as a cup final and win at any cost.
At the start of this campaign, the Swansea fans were hoping there’d be a change of style though. Hoping that under Clement, a decent manager, we could go back to the Swansea way. And despite another poor transfer window, there was brief hope that we could still do alright despite not having the quality of other sides if we brought back what got us to where we are today, the top-flight.
However, there wasn’t a change of style and a dismal opening day stalemate at Southampton was a glimpse of the negativity to come.
The Swans defeated Crystal Palace away at the end of August but we’d have to wait until nearly two months later for our next victory.
In September came disappointing home losses to Newcastle and Watford, who were definitely beatable on the day. More home losses to Leicester and Brighton followed them up as well as collapsing away at West Ham, Arsenal, Burnley, Stoke and Everton to name a few.
Where we were going with under Clement was the Championship, but even if we had Pep Guardiola, we’d probably be in the same position. Swansea City is now a poisoned chalice in which, if I was a decent enough manager, I wouldn’t go near it. Why would a manager want to come to this club in which managers are continually let down and will eventually take the wrap for Jenkins’ many, many errors over the past three years.
On summary, I’d like to say thank you to Clement for keeping us up and best of luck in the future, and also best of luck to our new manager whoever it may be… you’ll need it.