It has been a pretty depressing week to be a Swans fan. From a position – and one not the many years ago – where we were able to attract the likes of Michael Laudrup we now seemingly cannot entice a manager from MK Dons to try and push us onto the Premier League.
As it stands at the moment it feels like there is a long hard season ahead of us in the Championship. Two failed play off campaigns, the return of all of the loan stars we had last season and the departure of the manager almost two months after he signalled he wanted to exit makes for one of the worst summers we have had for a long long time.
Who is going to be our next manager?
- Someone Else (19%, 70 Votes)
- Cameron Toshack (14%, 52 Votes)
- Alan Tate (17%, 62 Votes)
- Russell Martin (11%, 39 Votes)
- Jody Morris (27%, 98 Votes)
- Chris Wilder (13%, 48 Votes)
Total Voters: 369
And at the moment it shows no signs of ending. In the last week we seem to have been turned down by both John Eustace and Russell Martin. Our interest in the latter remains but his 13th placed finish in League One last year seems to be something he feels more able to build on than our play off final defeat. Eustace was “personal reasons” rumoured maybe to be softened by a pay rise at QPR but it still remains that the Swans did not feel attractive enough to him to make the jump. You can cite whatever else you want but that will have played a part in it.
The name of Jody Morris has been in there for a week but we either aren’t progressing it or we are unable to progress it and yesterday Chris Wilder came back to the fore although it was greeted with a hugely cynical view for everywhere that he would not come here with the budgets we have available. We will see on that front but it is fair to say that no manager coming in will be given unlimited access to what is a relatively limited purse at the best of times.
Meanwhile Swansea legend Alan Tate is preparing the side for the home friendly against Southampton with one eye on the league opener at Blackburn for which, at this rate, he could end up still being in charge. Our transfer business seems to be on hold until we make the appointment which is putting us at a further disadvantage as we really don’t have anywhere near the strength in depth to approach a league campaign. A poor start – even in the early weeks – can often dictate the season ahead, we don’t want that at all.
It is difficult to know where we are turning next. Is it a straight fight between Morris and Wilder? Is Martin still in the frame or is that an interest that is in line with I am interested in winning tomorrow’s lottery but I’m not buying a ticket? We could maybe end up with a straight fight between Tate and Knill at this stage or is there another name to come in from left field to catch us all by surprise?
We were highly critical (and mocked) the way that Crystal Palace seemed to lurch from one disappointment to another in their managerial search – a series of events that left Cooper seemingly in a frame he wasn’t quite fully in – and now we are falling the same way. Julian Winter must be scratching his head and whilst there is much suggestion that the majority owners are unhappy with his performance there is little point in pretending that they are not already playing their part – Winter will be acting upon a level of instructions which means he cannot shoulder all of the blame here.
There is much speculation as to when it will end. “Trusted” journalists are asked on Twitter and reply with an insightful “soon” so I can add to that in that it could be today. Maybe tomorrow but if not either of them it will definitely be sometime after tomorrow. You didn’t quite hear it here first but you have to wonder if there is some more disappointment around the corner before we settle on a final decision.
All speculation yesterday was definitely around Wilder. He was spotted at an airport, Knill left Sheffield United so you do get the feeling they are about to link up somewhere. Swansea seems a possibility and it genuinely would not surprise me.
Whatever happens next and whenever we make that appointment we have to stop and take stock after it and wonder why we seemingly cannot attract our first choices? Only those involved in the discussions will know the reasons why we have been turned down but we have to review that and if we have made mistakes then we have to ensure we don’t make them again.
I’m not going into bold predictions right now as to what is to happen next. Wilder I think has not come out of nowhere and I think there is more to it than we have currently heard but it’s difficult to know if that is a statement made from one of confidence and experience in watching these things unfold or just the plain hope that we may actually bring things to a close and we can focus on the new season. Just two months too late but we could always catch up…
Remember again when we were attractive for Michael Laudrup? Sigh…