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Swansea City; review 2012/13 season, by Abigail Davies

(June 01, 2013)

Swansea City; review 2012/13 season

 Abigail DaviesAbigail Davies

Following a hugely successful and historic centenary season for Swansea City, I now laugh at how worried I was prior to the start of the 2012-13 campaign. After Brendan Rodgers' departure, we also saw key player Joe Allen and loan sensations Gylfi Sigurðsson and Steven Caulker (both now with Tottenham Hotspur) move on.

Rodgers' replacement, Michael Laudrup, could have turned out to be yet another shrewd Huw Jenkins managerial appointment, or he could have had an ego so big that Swansea City would never be a match for the former Barcelona star. Luckily the former proved accurate and the match turned out to be one made in heaven. From the first Premier League game of the season, change was apparent. It was refreshing to see the Swans looking more confident in front of goal and with a 5-0 victory on the opening day, they were clearly benefiting from the new manager's guidance.

Liberty StadiumFilling up before a Premier League game at the Liberty Stadium

Results continued to go the way of Swansea throughout the season and the club found themselves in the final of the Capital One Cup (the Football League Cup, as was), with an opportunity to win a first major trophy. Doing so and going on to record a ninth-place Premier League finish ensured Michael Laudrup's first season in charge of Swansea was one of the best, if not the best, in the history of the club.

Laudrup's Spanish reinforcements substantially contributed to the Swans fortunes. None more so than that 22-goal man, Michu. Signing for £2.2million, he proved himself to be one of the bargains of the season, almost in an instant. Next season will be a big test for Michu. I wouldn't be surprised if he scores half the goals he did during his maiden Premier League campaign (18), as his challenge now is far greater. When he arrived at Swansea he was an unknown talent. But, as the season progressed, Michu understandably became the marked man in the Swans side, allowing him far less space and time on the ball. He clearly suffered as a result, as he did not have the same impact during the latter half of the season. His job will now be to adapt and combat this.

Chico Flores was another crucial player for Swansea in his first season at the club. Quickly establishing a solid centre-back partnership with Ashley Williams, along with having a passion and attitude that cannot be faulted, it is no wonder why he was regarded a favourite among fans so soon after joining.

I hope to see the best of Pablo Hernández next season. The Spaniard showed only moderate glimpses of the talent he had shown in La Liga and had quite a disappointing season. Having had a season to adapt, it will be important that he proves his worth during the next campaign.

The Swans need around eight or nine new signings this summer in order to deal with the demands of European football, along with another Premier League campaign; three or four strikers and defenders and one or two midfielders. They need to invest in a midfield player who has the ability to take on a shot from outside the box. Too often, towards the end of last season, despite completely dominating possession, the Swans failed to test the opposition's goalkeeper.

If Swansea can develop a cutting edge, they will be the complete package in 2013/14. I can't wait.

Abigail Davies, 1 June 2013

Also by Abigail Davies:

     Cardiff City; ready for the Premier League? Preview 2012/13 season
: September, 2012

Swansea City 2011/12; a year at the top: review of their Premier League season: June, 2012
Book Review - Garry Monk: Loud, Proud & Positive: June, 2012

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