After the heroics of 2016/17 Swansea City expected much improvement heading into the summer. But the sales of Fernando Llorente and Gylfi Sigurdsson proved too much to overcome. A disastrous start to the season and a horrendous end saw the south Wales club relegated at the second time of asking.
Transfer Window Blunders Cost Swansea
It’s always difficult for the teams at the wrong end of the table to strengthen because of the extreme spending of the big clubs. If you have any good players they tend to leave for greener pastures. That was true for Swansea as their two pivotal players from their survival push left. Fernando Llorente left for a backup role at Spurs, and Gylfi Sigurdsson left for Everton for £44m.
Some incoming players were much less proven but offered promise, while others were on their way down. The Resigning of Wilfried Bony got the sentimental vote, even as the fee seemed hefty for a player who had, by any measure, failed at Manchester City. Tammy Abraham and Renato Sanches were brought in on loan and offered some forward thrust. Sam Clucas was a solid addition, joining from newly relegated Hull City.
Shocking Start To The Season
With just 2 wins in their first 15 games, the pressure was already mounting on Paul Lambert. When he took just 3 points from the next 9, it was time for yet another manager change for Swansea. The fourth manager in less than 18 months to take the helm was Carlos Carvalhal. Taking over with the club dead last and just 13 points from 20 matches it was a difficult task from the off.
Carvalhal got off to an almost miraculous start. A 3-1 win at Watford and consecutive home wins against Liverpool and Arsenal saw him nominated for Premier League Manager of The Month for January. Unfortunately for Swansea that was as good as it got, as they would win just 2 more games for the rest of the season.
End Of Season Swoon Dooms The Swans
Having climbed out of the relegation zone in January they slowly dropped into the relegation zone. Ending the season with a run of 5 consecutive losses, with just 2 goals scored summed up their season.
Sadly for Swansea, it seems highly unlikely they will rebound anytime soon. With Carvalhal confirming that he will be replaced as manager, and a number of players sure to leave there’s no easy road back. The Championship is a brutally competitive league, as Aston Villa, Hull, Sunderland, Derby and numerous others have found. It could be many years before we see the Swans back in the top flight.