Monday, 7 November 2016

The lost leader

There was a good chance yesterday for Swansea City to gain their second win of the season against a Manchester United who had showed their fragility against Fenerbah├že last Thursday. The message should have gone out to the players to get in the faces of the opposition. I do not doubt that Bob Bradley is a good coach. He has also shown that he can motivate his fellow-countrymen. But there must be doubts about his strategic ability with a team of varied backgrounds.

However, what was most missed yesterday was a driving force on the field. Ashley Williams would not have stood for Sunday's abject display. Many of us feared the worst when the captain decided that he wanted to end his Premier League career at Goodison Park rather than the Liberty, and our apprehension that his was the loss Swans could least bear has so far proved all too well-founded.

Most of the players on the field yesterday were part of the side that survived in the League last year and produced the occasional pleasing display. The new centre-back pairing looks promising, but will need time to bed in. In terms of playing ability, one may have confidence that this squad can hold its own, if not hit the heights, in the Premier League. The big question marks are over character and motivation.

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