Season Preview Swansea City 2016-17

It’s been a tale of two contrasting seasons for Swansea City. Having been touted as a possible relegation contender heading into the 2014/15 season, the club exceeded expectations with a 8th place finish. Coming into the 2015/16 season the Swans were expected to follow up on their 8th place with another top half finish. Despite a strong start to campaign the club found themselves dangerously hovering over the relegation spots heading into December.

Garry Monk was eventually sacked from his post ending his 10 year association with his club. After a month under caretaker manager Alan Curtis the club appointed Italian Francesco Guidolin as their new manager. The club went on a good run under the new manager which ultimately helped them to a respectable 12th place finish. The goal for Swansea this season would be to achieve a high mid table finish and if possible break into the top 10.

Swansea City 2016-17 Season Preview

Swansea City 2016-17 Preview - manager Francesco Guidolin

Francesco Guidolin (Pic Cou: theguardian.com)

The appointment of Guidolin last season came as surprise. Despite having over 3 decades of managerial experience the Italian was a relative unknown in the English game. Guidolin’s high points in his managerial career came when guided now Serie B side Vicenza Calcio to the Coppa Italia title in 1996/97 season. His second stint with Udinese was also a high point which saw the club finishing 4th, 3rd and 5th in three consecutive seasons.

The Swans improved drastically under Guidolin last season. In the 16 Premier League games under his watch the club managed to accumulate 25 points and eventually finished 3 points behind 10th placed Chelsea. The Italian manager has insisted that his goal for the season is to reach 40 points and then build the season from there on.

To be fair it hasn’t been a summer to remember for the Swans. The club have sold several key players including captain Ashley Williams and striker Andrew ayew to fellow Premier League clubs. A number of players including Emnes and Bafetimbi Gomis have been send out on loan as well. The club have been active in the transfer window but it remains to be seen whether the incoming players can replace the outgoing ones well enough.

33 year old Leon Britton who has spend all but one of his professional career with Swansea City has been appointed the new club captain in place of the departed Ashley Williams [1]. On paper Swansea do have a pretty good first team and Guidolin’s target of 40 points should be well within their reach.

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Squad Breakdown

Lukasz Fabinaski who has started all but one of Swansea’s last 76 league games is set to continue as their No.1 keeper. The club does have considerable back up to Fabianski in Kristoffer Nordfeldt and new acquisition Mark Birighitti.

Mike Van Der Hoorn who has been bought from Ajax this summer is expected fill the void left by Ashley Williams. Federico Fernandez and Jordi Amat are the club’s other options in the center of defense. Kyle Naughton and Stephen Kingesly should feature as the club’s 1st choice right and left backs. The duo will backed up by the experienced Angel Rangel at RB and Neil Taylor at LB.

The Swansea midfield looks solid if not exciting. Player such as Wayne Routledge, Leroy Fer, Leon Britton and Jack Cork have plenty of Premier League experience and can be banked on delivering good performances week after week. Nathan Dyer and Jefferson Montero have the pace to trouble any team from the wings and will be expected to put in plenty of crosses into the box.

The club will be counting on the Spanish duo of Fernando Llorente and Borja Baston to convert the crosses into goals. Both Llorente and Baston have been brought in this summer with the latter smashing Swansea’s transfer record. It has to be seen whether Guidolin will opt to play with a lone striker or put in both strikers together.

Swansea City 2016-17 Season Prediction

It’s been a below par start to the campaign for the Swans. Despite picking up a win against Burnley in their opener the club have suffered back to back defeats to Hull and Leicester heading into the international break. Goals have been hard to come by with Fernando Llorente anything but convincing in his appearances so far. Borja Baston is yet to feature for the club due to an injury and the club will hoping they’ll be able to turn things around after the break.

The poor start to the campaign is set to continue with the Swans facing Chelsea, Southampton, Manchester City, Liverpool and Arsenal in their next five games. The club will however get some decent results mid-season which will ultimately help them survive the cut.

Verdict: – 16th Place

Player to Watch – Swansea City 2016-17

Swansea Assist Leader Sigurdsson

Gylfi Sigurdsson (Pic Cou: Skysports.com)

Gylfi Sigurdsson

Swansea’s Mr.dependable – Gylfi Sigurdsson comes into the new season on the back of historic European Championships. The 26 year old played a big part in Iceland’s Campaign which saw the country reaching the quarter’s beating England in the process [2]. Sigurdsson was rumored to make a move to Everton but Swansea has managed to keep hold of the talented midfielder.

The midfielder scored a total of 11 goals from 33 games last season. He was undoubtedly one of the best players last term and with a weak squad at Swansea’s disposal this season the club will be hoping for some Sigurdsson screamers this season.

Betting Tips – Swansea City 2016-17

1. Premier League Champions – 1001.00 (Paddypower)

Nope!

2. Relegation – 4.33 (Betway)

The odds on offer makes this a compelling bet. Unlike most of the other Premier League seasons the 25th anniversary of the league promises to be hotly contested from top to bottom. Burnley and Hull are thought to be the favorites for relegation both of them have gotten off to a better start than the Swans. We are backing Swansea to survive the cut but we’ll leave this one upto you.

3. Bottom Half Finish – 1.18 (Netbet)

Good Bet. Poor Odds.

4. Stay Up – 1.29 (Skybet)

Decent Bet. Poor Odds.

5. First Manager to be Sacked – 7.00 (Skybet)

As of now Guidolin is the third favorite behind Tony Pulis and Alan Pardew to be the first one to get sacked. The club does have a difficult run of fixtures coming up and can’t see them get much from them. The club may as well find themselves bottom of the table heading into Christmas so this is one bet we suggest you guys should keep an eye on.

6. Bottom at Christmas – 15.00 (Stanjames.com)

The odds won’t drop much and if the performances don’t improve in the next 3-5 games then go ahead and place your money on it.

7. Lowest Scoring Team – 11.00 (Betvictor)

For the sake of Swansea we hope the club starts scoring

All Odds courtesy of Oddschecker [3]

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Transfers In – Swansea City 2016-17

Transfer In

Sl No Position Player Fee – From
1 STR Fernando Llorente 6 million Sevilla
2 STR Borja Baston 18 million Atletico Madrid
3 MF Leroy Fer 5.6 million QPR
4 MF George Byers Free Watford
5 DF Mike Van Der Hoorn _ Ajax
6 DF Alfie Mawson _ Barnsley
7 GK Mark Birighitti Free Newcastle Jets

Swansea City – 2015/16 Stats

Pos Team Played Won Lost Draw GD Points
12 Swansea City 38 12 15 11 -10 47

Other Season Prediction and Betting Tips

Sunderland 2016-17 Season Prediction and Betting Tips

External Resources

[1] theguardian.com, Swansea Sell Ashley Williams to Everton

[2] BBC.co.uk, Iceland beat England 2-1

[3] Oddschecker.com, Oddschecker Home Page