Tag Archive: Swansea

Swansea boss Michael Laudrup‘s comments that he sees nothing wrong with clubs offering rival teams money to win if it will benefit them – so-called ‘suitcasing’ and apparently commonplace in Spain – have quite rightly sparked anger amongst British football fans.

Laudrup has caused controversy by saying he doesn’t “see anything bad” in the suggestion that a third side can offer another in the league a financial reward, or incentive, to win a game that benefits them both.

To explain further, a hypothetical example would be Swansea players being offered an extra financial bonus by, say, Wigan for the Welsh club to beat, for example, Southampton, if that result would directly benefit Wigan in a relegation battle.

While these crucial occasions are not common and usually restricted to the final weeks of a season, the suggestion that it is ‘OK’ for this practice to go ahead is surely dangerous for the game – and for someone of Laudrup’s standing to offer his backing to it, quite frankly, shocking.

Laudrup said: “If Swansea play the last game against a team and a third team pays Swansea to win the game, I really don’t see anything bad about that.”

Online message-boards and phone-ins have been dominated by fans angered by his comments and they are quite right to object to what is a flawed wisdom which breeds and feeds an underground current and a totally unregulated culture that will unduly affect results and scores

It is a very dangerous and murky road to go down. If players are suddenly offered more money to win games then how long before others are offered more to lose a meaningless game? In truth, while it might not be technically illegal, it completely goes against sporting traditions and is a short sidestep away from blatant match-fixing – something we are thankfully not too familiar with in the Barclays premier league but an issue which remains a threat in other parts of the world, not least Italy, where an ongoing match-fixing scandal at the highest level continues to be investigated.

In the light of Laudrup’s naive and outspoken comments, the FA have reminded everyone they, of course, have clear rules to outlaw any form of bribery, match-fixing and corruption.

Some will say that Laudrup, brought up and used to football in another culture, was merely revealing what many know goes on ahead of certain crucial games in other countries and expressing his personal opinion that he doesn’t see much wrong with it.

But it is clearly a dark route for football to go down and, while it may be seen as ‘the norm’ in Spain, it is never something that should be tolerated over here.


By Tony Alvarez
Roberto Martinez Wigan yesterday suffered a 2-0 defeat at their DW Stadium home against Martinez former employers Swansea.
Since becoming involved with management regardless of what side he has been at the helm of Martinez has insisted on his side being a ball playing side similar to many European sides and like the national team of his homeland Spain.

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By Tony Alvarez

The Championhip play offs get under way tonight with 6th placed Nottingham Forest taking on 3rd placed Swansea at the City ground followed on Friday by Reading who finished 5th in the league hosting 4th placed Cardiff, of course those league placings count for nothing now.

The reverse fixtures will then be held on the following Monday forSwanseaand Forest and Tuesday forCardiffandReading.

The prize of course a trip to Wembley for the final which is often labelled the richest game in Football with the winners believed to received around £60 million pound as well as the right to be hosting the likes of Arsenal Manchester United and Liverpool.

Swanseago in as the bookies favourites with the bookies opting to base the odds upon league placings however they are very tight odds and there is no clear favourite.

Despite the bookies and the league table suggesting Swansea are favourites I think Reading have a strong chance, they are on an amazing run of form a blip against Sheffield United is their only loss in the league since Feburary the 12th, they also have the advantage of being the only one of the four clubs that’s played Premier League Football in recent years.

Another reason I can see Reading going up is there arguably have the most inform player of the sides in the play offs with Shane Long seemingly unable to stop scoring ,the 24 year old Irishman has hit 21 league goals this term and showing no signs of slowing down.

Swansea fans may argue with me saying Long is the form player where they have a few stars of their own Scott Sinclair has been a revelation since joining Swansea, the winger has 19 league goals this term but he is about more than goals and Swansea’s attacking play is mainly focused around his pace and dribbling ability.

The Swans also have the man of the moment in Chelsea loanee Fabio Borini the young Italian has only made 8 starts but has notched 6 goals in that spell and his poaches instinct could be in the push for the Premiership.

As you may of gathered from the above mySwanseaandReadingare my tips to win their semi finals and progress to Wembley,Cardifffor me have shown in the last few years that they are big game bottlers and a combination of a lack of bottle and playing a goodReadingside could be too much for them.

Forest for me aren’t at the level of the rest of the sides in the play offs and although they will always battle and the fans at the City ground will be the clichéd 12th man I can see Swansea winning the tie by the odd goal.

What do you think? Are you in agreement with my opinions? Who do you think will win the play offs? Are any of these sides good enough to survive in the Premier League? Leave a comment and let us know your thoughts.

With Welsh clubs Cardiff and Swansea gunning for promotion into the Premier League Shouts From The Stands asks the question: Is it right to have Welsh teams playing in the English leagues?

The question is being asked in many circles due to Cardiff and Swansea lying in 2nd and 3rd respectively in the Coca Cola Championship and looking promising to gain at least a place in the play offs.

There have been talks of Scottish teams, mainly Rangers and Celtic joining the English leagues for years and reportedly this proposal has been rejected. So why the double standards?

I understand that constricting the Welsh sides to the Welsh leagues would bankrupt them almost instantly where as the Scottish teams can survive financially playing in their own league, however they would be severely better off were they involved in the English league system.

A media report last season suggested that Rangers the Scottish champion’s highest paid player was on around 5 thousand pounds a week, I happen to know that there is a player at a middle of the table Championship side who is on eight thousand and not a guaranteed starter.

Many fans will think why the fuss now no one has ever really cared in the past 100 odd years, but with at least one of the Welsh sides looking like gaining promotion Fans are saying it is unacceptable to have a Welsh side in the elite of the English league.

Why is it deemed acceptable to have Welsh sides in the second tier and lower but as soon as they “make the big time” it is unacceptable?

Consider the idea for a moment that one if not both of Cardiff and Swansea were to get promoted and then qualify for the Champions League, is it correct to have a Welsh side representing the English league in Europe?

So what do you think should the Welsh be included in the English leagues? If so should Rangers and Celtic and all the other Scottish league clubs be invited to join the English league system?

If you disagree with Welsh sides in the English leagues what do you think could be done about this problem? Is it too far down the line to find a solution? I of course don’t want any clubs to be made bankrupt and to go extinct.

Please read the comments from other fans and see if you agree with their points.

Check back regularly to see other fans response to your comments and to see if there are any more articles which are added almost daily.

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