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Where are the issues for Russell Martin ? Team examined and Swansea City transfer update. New names.
Sunday, 9th Jan 2022 11:04 by Felts on Swansea

It’s an incredible fact that every game bar maybe three this season the swans have thrown away. They could have been three points if not one, and maybe Russell Martin would be getting a smoother journey post Christmas.

Yes, the cancellations haven’t helped, but then with the squad in the state it is in on the pitch at the moment, that may well have been a god send. But Martin has clear problems in his ability to select a side that is competitive and indeed clear in what it has to do. We need to have a look at this.

Goalkeeper : Unfortunately Ben Hamer isn’t good enough, he is too easily beaten on the ground either side of him, and Steven Benda it seems is on his way out at some point this month or in the summer. This seems to have been addressed and Andrew Fisher as we reported last month on his way.

Wing backs : If the manager insists on having this as a formation option it’s more than clear the swans have absolutely no player of any substance at the club who can fulfil this role. Ethan Laird did well in this position with questionable defensive qualities. If the swans continue to play this way they need two quality wing backs which are hard to find and will prove costly. Otherwise he will forever be jamming square legs in to round holes, and that’s where we see the issues in conceding goals recently. Players out of position and playing a system that is still alien to some being expected to slot in as and when. Swansea City do not have any player who can do that at wing back, so why bother ? Either bring the players in or abandon a system which is clearly leaking goals and has players within it that have no experience or clue in how to play the role.

Defenders : The swans have an abundance of decent defenders, we still think Jake Bidwell will leave. Kyle Naughton, Ryan Bennett, Joel Latibeaudiere, Ben Cabango, Brandon Cooper, Ryan Manning ( albeit decent in any position ) are all capable in a championship league. For us here Tivonge Rushesha isn’t good enough and Rhys Williams looks like he’s staring into bright headlights every time he is seen in a swans shirt. He needs to return to Liverpool amd cant understand why the swans haven’t reviewed that and orchestrated a situation where he leaves. It is expected that either Harry Darling from MK Dons or Marc Leonard from Brighton are loan options and could be brought in to freshen up things. The former is preferred but Leonard does have a huge future despite his lack of game time. He is a risk. Club team mate Haydon Roberts is the other option, but he doesn’t seem massively keen to come to Swansea. However, next week could see changes. Numerous Scottish premier league players are still linked, whoever comes in we feel has to be better than we have.

Midfield : Matt O'Riley is needed in the swans midfield, irrespective of what some will think. He is an attacking midfielder with some lace, tall and strong he has scored six goals from twenty two games this season. With Flynn Downes, Matt Grimes, Olivier Ntcham and Jamie Paterson are already established Swansea players. Jay Fulton and Yan Dhanda surely need to move on, we hear they have had offers they don’t like. Jordon Garrick remains at Plymouth and Ollie Cooper is developing at Newport. They should remain and Kyle Jospeh should be used as a pacy option on either wing, similar to Michael Obafemi against Southampton. Korey Smith remains an option and seems to be a Martin favourite.

Attack : We all know about Joel Piroe who remains fit, and that’s a big thing for any further hope this season. Michael Obafemi has caused Martin headaches but he tells us now he is focussed and training well. Liam Cullen displayed yesterday just why he needs time away from the club on loan. And Morgan Whittaker displayed on his Lincoln debut yesterday the benefits of a loan move.

For anyone in any doubt here is an appraisal of his debut yesterday for Lincoln City. Morgan Whittaker: There haven’t been many better debuts than this in Imps history. Full of trickery, vision and guile, even before he scored with a classy finish early in the second half. 9/10.

As it stands if any striker comes in it will almost certainly be on loan as any spare cash is needed for Andrew Fisher and Mat O’Riley. For us the issues Martin has is cash flow to bring in the players he wants amd a reluctance from certain l,Ayers he has to play to the standard he wants. This is fast becoming clear and we can see now that numerous players are not good enough. Liam Walsh is one, Jay Fulton and Yan Dhanda are two others. All three need striking off the wage bill ASAP. And with Blackburn Rovers now ready to pounce for Andrew Fisher we need the talking to stop and remarks like ‘players in next week’ also has to stop before we again get gazzumped by a club who will pay more.

How much longer Russell Martin has will be dictated by his next string of results before the end of the window. The swans could easily be kissing the play offs goodbye if they fail to gather quickly needed points. And albeit this is a season of transition the voices will get louder questioning his ability to be manager of Swansea City. That’s not our stance, especially as the club won’t sack him anyway but the topic keeps coming up, and possibly when people realise they are wasting their breath they won’t keep on day in day out about it.

Photographs licensed from Reuters

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