Transfer Window Review: Swansea
Posted by Matt Walters | Published on September 1, 2016
Last season Swansea finished twelfth in the Premier League and despite initially struggling, they survived relegation comfortably. However, they sold key players in captain Ashley Williams and Andre Ayew. There has been much made of Swansea’s business this Summer, with many fans voicing their discontent over key targets joining other clubs. Many fans also believe that the club have failed to strengthen sufficiently. I will assess the signings made and how they could contribute to the team this season.
Transfer Fee: £4.75m
After joining on loan in January 2016 as a replacement for Jonjo Shelvey, the Dutch midfielder made his move permanent in June and has since appeared in every game for Swansea so far this season, scoring their only two goals in the Premier League this season; the winner against Burnley and a late consolation against Leicester. He has looked sharp going forward but has struggled defensively so far this season and he may struggle to get into the team once Ki Sung-Yueng and Leon Britton return to full fitness after the international break.
Mike van der Hoorn
The defender joined the club shortly after compatriot Leroy Fer and is yet to start for the Swans in the Premier League. However, Swansea’s current centre back pairing of Jordi Amat and Federico Fernandez have looked shaky at best this season so there may be some first team action around the corner for van der Hoorn. Brought in to replace the legendary Ashley Williams, there is a lot of pressure on him but Swansea fans hope he can prove himself this season.
From: Newcastle Jets
Fee: Free Transfer
One of the stranger transfers of Swansea’s window. Having joined the club with Lukasz Fabianski, Kristoffer Nordfeldt, Gerhard Tremmel and youth goalkeepers Gregor Zabret and Josh Vickers already at the club, it’s difficult to see where the Australian fits in to the team. Having previously worked with assistant manager Gabriele Ambrosetti at Varese, Birighitti is familiar with the staff and on a free transfer with low wages, he is hardly a waste of money.
Fee: Undisclosed, believed to be £5m
The Spaniard comes to South Wales with a big reputation despite a difficult season in Seville, having won two Serie A titles with Juventus alongside the World Cup and 2 European Championships with Spain. After 85 goals for Athletic Bilbao, Swansea fans will be hoping the Basque frontman can bring success to the Liberty Stadium.
From: Atletico Madrid
Baston was believed to be Atletico’s biggest young prospect and made his debut at 17 off the bench. However, 12 minutes later he ruptured his cruciate ligament and never appeared for his boyhood club again. After several loan moves – the most successful coming last season when he scored 18 goals for Eibar despite them averaging the fewest chances created in La Liga – he has joined Swansea for a club record fee. He is apparently set to make his debut against Chelsea after the international break.
The centre back has enjoyed two good seasons at Wycombe and Barnsley, last season winning the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and the play offs as Barnsley were promoted to the Championship. He is a ball-playing defender with an eye for goal and has been compared to Swansea’s departed captain Ashley Williams and Swansea fans hope he can emulate the Wales captain.