The transfer window has traditionally been a period where the speculation is rife, the links are plentiful and the “excitement” gradually builds as the end of August approaches and the clubs look to finalise the squads which will see them through to January and – in many cases – largely see them through to the end of the season.
It’s a window that sees players leave less than three weeks into a season and can often see some “panic” moves at the end of the month as players and clubs alike look to force through last minute moves that can raise more than a few eyebrows on occasion.
The Swans of course did some early business (or early in terms of the relative description when it comes to the window) and the arrival of Darling, Allen, Wood and Sorinola are testament to that as is the departure of Flynn Downes to West Ham. All indications that the belief of Russell Martin that you should do your dealings early are being adhered to.
However, there remains a wide belief that Joel Piroe is still a likely departure during August and it has been well publicised that the Swans have a host of players they would like to move on this summer – Ryan Bennett, Jay Fulton, Steven Benda and Jordan Garrick being amongst the names on that list.
So it feels as if there is still business to be done but the links to players elsewhere are definitely not as widespread as I seem to remember them from past windows. This time last year you would see new links almost on a daily basis many of which failed to come to fruition but that is the nature of a transfer window. Links are plentiful, some are real and some are fuelled by adesire to increase interest in players and largely driven by agents. Ashley Williams’ impending departure from Swansea every summer for six years was a great example of that.
But this summer feels different. Those links are not there which prompts us to wonder why that may be the case. Is it as simple as we widely advertised back at the start of the summer that we needed people to leave before we could recruit or is it simply that the club are working hard to plug the leaks that have been in place there for many years? The latter seems impossible to completely eradicate so you suspect that the former is much more at play here.
The Swans have openly said on more than one occasion this season that they need to see people leave before we can strengthen and it is certainly a narrative that they have been happy to see the press portray over the course of the close season.
Flynn Downes departure opened the door for the arrival of Joe Allen (again well signposted through the media) but now we are clearly sat back waiting for some of the departures mentioned above before we can make our final moves of the summer. It’s clear to us all (and therefore we assume to Russell Martin) that we need further strengthening but seemingly without the ability to move on these players we have no budget we can free up to make the signings we need – loan or otherwise.
And that in itself tells you all you need to know about why the speculation around us this window is so quiet in previous years. It is simply driven by the speculation around the future of these players is so quiet in return. Unless there is interest in them then it is difficult for us – or close on impossible – to make the moves that we need in response.
Those are things that have to change in the next four weeks or we will end up in September with the squad that we have now and that will set some concern running amongst many Swans fans given we know the depth of our current squad is not what we need to maintain any level of challenge even potentially in the top half of the table.
The next month will remain to be interesting to watch unfold but as it stands right now this summer remains what seems to be one of the quietest summers to date for us and the window. And that is a concern.