Another English Premier League season is in the books, which means it’s time for everyone’s favorite offseason activity: speculation! As we know, silly season will soon officially be upon us as clubs from all over the world attempt to improve their squad for the upcoming campaigna��whether through addition by subtraction or the more conventional route: spending that sweet, sweet Premier League money.
Over the next couple months we’ll go through each EPL side, identifying their strengths and weaknesses while pointing out which player(s) they likely cannot afford to lose. Will the names always be notable? Perhaps not, but that doesn’t make them any less important.
After the 2014 campaign, I wanted to believe Swansea City had turned a corner. The Welsh club placed eighth on 56 points that season, and Garry Monk seemed to have them headed in the right direction. But when the 2015 season had come to a close, Monk was no longer around and Swansea had fallen back to 12tha��where they finished two seasons ago.
Maybe they’re simply just that: a mid-table team with a surprise or two in them from season to season. But what can they do to improve that perception?
The Biggest Need Is Up Top
In January of 2015 Swansea sold their prolific striker, Wilfried Bony, to Manchester City. They made anywhere between A?25-A?28 million on the sale, a tidy profit considering they had spent A?12 milliona��a club recorda��two years prior to acquire him.
They should buy him back. Or at least attempt to.
Sure Bony would have to take a wage cut, but here’s the thing: as a player, he’s not all that effective. Okay, okay, he’s very effective in the right setup. Anyone can bag goals in the Eredivisiea��looking at you, Jozy Altidorea��and in 2012 with Vitesse, Bony tallied 31 in 25 league matches.
Despite the fact that the Eredivisie has the tendency to inflate goal-scoring totals, the fee Swansea paid for him at the time was more than appropriate. And Bony did plenty to repay them.
In his first Premier League season, Bony scored 16 and added four assists in 34 matches. In all competitions for Swansea that seasona��50 matchesa��he notched 27 goals. A club like Swansea will take that all year long. Before being sold the following season, Bony added 9 more goals in 20 matches. A bit of a drop off, yes, and yet significantly better than what Swansea have gotten out of their forwards since.
Without Bony, they got just 7 goals out of BafA�timbi Gomis. Every other striker in the Swansea squad combined to add just 1. Last season, midfielders/wingers AndrA� Ayew (12) and Gylfi SigurA�sson (11) led the scoring. Meanwhile, four strikers that received plenty of minutes combined for only 9 goals. Gomis had 6 himself.
Gomis might leave this summer, as might Ayew, and then what? Coming off the poor season, how long do you think they’ll be able to hang onto SigurA�sson? And will a move for Leicester’s Leonardo Ulloa help all that much? Bony sure doesn’t fit in at City, and perhaps his performances at Swansea deceived many, but the Welsh side haven’t come close to finding a credible goal-scoring threat since his departure.
Swansea City is always going to be a club that ships anywhere between 45-55 goals during a season. At least for the foreseeable future. They’ll have to take a good look at their back linea��Wales captain Ashley Williams isn’t getting any younger, despite his impressive Euro performancesa��but they can only do so much.
They don’t have the money to spend big, their youth prospects are lacking, and we just don’t know which kind of club we’re going to get on a year-to-year basis right now.
Addressing their forward situation is an absolute must, but if performances like 2015 continue to mount, they’re just going to keep losing whichever threatening players they have left. After all, it’s already started.
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