As the “official” news was breaking yesterday on social media and all sorts of media outlets played catch up with the news that Steve Cooper was leaving I made a decision not to publish immediate articles largely because I had already had my say on the weekend…
Well, that was purely part of it, the other part was a week off work and a day out with the family enjoying the sun so it was only the notifications that told me that the news we published on Saturday against a backdrop of large amounts of disbelief had come true and that Steve Cooper had indeed left Swansea City.
A simple Tweet summed up my view on the events leading up to the departure and Swansea City is bigger than anything else so today we move on.
Thanks to those who supported the site when the flak was flying. Things like the article are only ever written with consideration and a strong belief the source is spot on. It would be easy to target the doubters but it's not about that, the site is better than that #swans
— Planet Swans (@swansnews) July 21, 2021
Today, when we reflect back on the day that confirmed his departure then there are a few things to look back on but really it is about looking forward and embracing whatever may come next because – as we said yesterday – Swansea City is bigger than any one man.
The things though to look back on are firstly why the media did not see this coming or were they totally sworn to secrecy. The latter I know to be the case at the start of this week (once the news hit the public domain) but were they totally oblivious to it before. Not naming names but are they just happy to receive the occasional transfer titbit and player interview in return for complete oblivion to what is happening at the club. It is that oblivion that gave us Tony Petty in 2001 (remember the Evening Post welcomed him on Day 1 and the Western Mail (as was) never questioned anything), the sale of the club in 2016 was always ignored by the media and, as the legal case rumbles on, it still is and now we have this. Silence but yesterday they were all breaking news despite the fact it had been discussed in multiple places for many days.
Secondly, Julian Winter was clear that the club and the manager reached agreement two weeks ago. Not agreement on the terms of his departure but his departure itself. So that means we have spent two weeks negotiating terms. Terms we will undoubtedly never know the detail of but terms that are likely to see the club hit in the pocket whilst the manager increases the size of his. We know that there will be other terms as part of the agreement (silence may be one of them!) but two weeks to get there is pretty dreadful negotiations by anyone’s standards especially when you are in the middle of one of your most crucial periods of any calendar year.
Finally, just how badly did Steve Cooper want to leave Swansea City and why. We know about Palace and Fulham but West Brom were thrown into the mix yesterday so the guy wasn’t backwards in coming forwards about a desire to leave. We have speculation that he felt he wasn’t backed in the transfer market – one journalist highlights the inability to bring in a No 9 in January which ignores the fact that Cooper also failed on that in the summer transfer window as well. We have rumours of falling out with the American owners which I can buy as plausible as the “absent” Steve Kaplan does have a tendency to be on the phone to managers almost every day (or so I am led to believe by multiple sources over a long period of time.) And finally we have speculation that he just believed he had taken this club as far as he could. Again, that is plausible.
But whatever way as we look to close the Steve Cooper chapter at Swansea City his exit was handled in a poor way by all concerned. The manager seemingly was hawking himself about (we don’t necessarily blame him for that) and the club wanted him to leave but in the middle of it all we asked him to oversee pre-season training and matches for a gig that he knew wasn’t his any more. That just isn’t good to see and shows a lack of leadership within other areas of the club which present a longer term problem and maybe does add some weight to an inability to get that No 9 in during the January window.
We do indeed move on but we have more questions than answers but there is little chance of the local media asking them.