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Home Opinion Fans patience will be key to Swans success

Fans patience will be key to Swans success



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The Russell Martin era at Swansea City will begin in earnest on the pitch on Saturday at Blackburn with promises of a change in style and bringing back the entertainment side of the game which has been so sadly missing over the course of the last couple of years.

There was definitely part of the last two years of watching on streams with – largely – a Swans commentary team that made it a hard watch but we should not lose sight of the fact that a Steve Cooper team is not an attractive watch at the best of times.

There is little doubt that Cooper was capable of getting results.  Two play off campaigns in two seasons tells you that but if you reflect back on the past two years and the games that you watched (whether it was pre, during or post lockdowns) there would be very few that stood out as entertaining encounters full of chances for the Swans.

Let’s be straight here we are not expecting smooth football all the time but I will never forget a play off final at Wembley where a Steve Cooper side failed to turn up and as a result failed to register a shot on target.  The richest game of football was rewarded with the poorest performance seen by a team in many years.  That game, for me, summed up the Steve Cooper era at Swansea and it is one that I am glad to see behind me.

Russell Martin seems to be clear in his philosophy.  He wants his team to entertain, he wasn’t to make them good to watch from the touchline and he wants to bring back ‘The Swansea Way’ all of which will be music to the ears of the average Swansea fan.

However, that same average fan needs to remember that these things will not change overnight.  Martin has to overturn a couple of years of negative style-stifling football where players have been coached to be naturally negative and creativity has been sadly lacking for so long.   It’s difficult to know if we have the players who want to play the Martin way or not.  If we do, the style may change quicker than we are anticipating but if we haven’t then it will take time to develop before we see the results of the work of the coaching staff.

If it is the case that it will need to be longer then we, as fans, need to be patient.  This may well be a season of transition.  We may not challenge heavily at the top but so long as we are clear of the bottom then this is OK.  Things rarely change overnight and it is fair to say that Russell Martin seems to have a totally different philosophy to Steve Cooper and that will take time to embed into the playing squad.

The good news is Martin has his team with him and we have Alan Tate remaining from knowing what the Swans is all about.  Tate’s continued inclusion in the first team coaching squad is welcomed and Martin will make it clear to his squad this morning what he is looking for and how he intends to get there.

But we reiterate patience from us as fans is needed to allow this transition to take place.  As we prepare to return to the games after so long away (two pretty poor play off performances apart) we cannot afford to get irritated and critical if we lose a game but I do have confidence that we will get there and I actually don’t think it will take as long as maybe it feels it should.

The main thing is that we get back to enjoying the way that we play football, people start to recognise us again for that style and we don’t need to continue to bring books to games to pass the time in between action.

Welcome back to The Swansea Way – you have been missed.

This article was first published on August 2 2021.


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  1. Please repeat this article throughout the season. We all need to be patient, but the rewards will come. Online abuse and so-called fans yelling “rubbish, boot it up the field, mun,” won’t be helpful. Hopefully, true Swans fans will embrace the process and be wise enough to know that there will be setbacks, and a few poor results along the way. That is when we stick together and show trust in our coaching staff and players, and show that we, the fans, are an encouraging and positive part of the process.
    Many of us remember the Swansea Way, and how it was introduced back in 2007. We embraced it, loved and trusted Roberto, and the process, which became our identity, took us to the status of an established Premier League club with a major trophy in the cabinet and a good European campaign under our belt.
    We were patient and we loved the journey.
    Now we have another chance. As Russell Martin says, “Ignore the noise, trust the process and enjoy the journey.”
    C’mon you Swans.

    • The difference now is that many fans only look at the table and if we are not PL top 10 moan like crazy.
      Does Martin have the quality of Roberto, Sousa, Rodgers and Laudrup? Probably not and I do not expect that degree of success in terms of table finishes but I looking forward to enjoying games again as we did fora. while once Potter was up and running.
      But it will take time and there will be mistakes at all levels.
      Definitely a defining season for the fans; are er going to be the supporters many like to think we are or continue to be the moaners of late?

  2. It won’t take long, I fear, Badlands, for the moaners to start. A couple of bad results, that’s all. But, as the article above states, we need to be patient.
    The process will take time – if we give it a chance, it will take many wonderful years. The last time, we started with a young and very inexperienced Roberto, (player/coach at non-league Chester) a man with determination, a vision and belief, and we ended with Laudrup, Premier League top ten and a major trophy. It took time, and we gave it time, and loved the process.
    Please, I hope we can ignore the noise of the moaners and the media who will be waiting for us to trip up, and stick with the new gaffer and the team through thick and thin. We, the fans, are a huge part of the process. Time to stand up and be counted.

    • Many fans will follow Swansea through thick and thin until they are racially abused, then they fall away and perform similarly to the abused players do.

  3. A nice article and sufficiently honest to stand the test of time.
    Will Russell truly encompass Roberto’s philosophy based on ability, touch and vison?
    Will he provide the grit which Brendan allowed Leon to project?

    I’m not sure tbh but praise to the Lord that Keith’s son has gone.

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Phil Sumblerhttp://www.planetswans.co.uk
Been watching the Swans since the very late 1970s and running the Planet Swans website (in all its current and previous guises since the summer of 2001 As it stood JackArmy.net was right at the forefront of some of the activity against Tony Petty back in 2001, breaking many of the stories of the day as fans stood against the actions where the local media failed. Was involved with the Swans Supporters Trust from 2005, for the large part as Chairman before standing down in the summer of 2020.

Swansea City v Hull City, EFL Championship



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