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Garry Monk ready to prove the doubters wrong again as manager's job beckons

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: May 05, 2014

Leon Britton looks for a way through the Southampton midfield. Pictures: Robert Melen

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THE interview was last week, yet Garry Monk accepts that questions will be asked all summer.

Swansea City are this week expected to appoint Monk as the permanent successor to Michael Laudrup.

And though he has impressed during three months as head coach, Monk acknowledges that there are bound to be some who query his credentials.

The desire to justify his appointment will drive him on.

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"I am excited about what we might do next season," Monk said.

"And the best bit for me is that you are always going to get doubted.

"I know that, and that's always driven me on. I have talked before about how as a player you get doubted.

"Then when the club offered me the job on the coaching side, people said I couldn't get us safe.

"We've proved them wrong.

"Then next season they will say 'Oh he hasn't got the contacts, he can't get the players, who wants to play for Garry Monk?', all that stuff.

"It's another chance for me to prove them wrong. That's something I have lived with my whole career and who says I will not do that as a manager?"

Monk remained adamant over the weekend that he had not been offered the chance to stay on as Swansea boss.

But all the signs are that he will be installed as the full-time manager in the next few days, probably on an initial two-year deal.

Monk has done enough to convince Swansea's owners that he has the ability to lead the club in the long term having guided them to safety in what has been a turbulent year.

The big job was done last week, when Swansea followed up victory at Newcastle with another success against Aston Villa.

They had waited almost a year and a half for two successive Premier League victories.

A third in a row may always have been asking a bit much — though Swansea had their chances against Southampton on Saturday.

Neither side had that much to play for, and it showed in what was a low-key game.

If some of the players involved may already be winding down for the summer, Monk is not.

He was simmering at the end after Swansea were beaten by the scrappiest of goals in the third minute of stoppage time.

"It's not a meaningless game to me," he insisted. "I want to win every game — I have told you that.

"And if we don't win, the next best thing is not to lose, but we didn't do that either.

"It's disappointing because for 90 minutes, we actually played pretty well.

"We had to defend properly in the first half, which we did, but even then we had three clear-cut chances. In the second half it was a much more even game, but one lapse of concentration has cost us at the end. In a way it's the story of our season."

Monk's problems — the need for his team to score more goals and concede fewer — will be familiar to many more experienced managers.

In truth — and even though Michu has had a miserable year — Swansea have not struggled going forward across this season.

There were chances which went begging in their last home game — Pablo Hernandez should have scored and Wilfried Bony might have done twice. But the bigger issues during 2013-14 have been at the back, where at times Swansea have been pierced all too easily.

Southampton bossed the ball for much of this weekend's contest, yet they did not create that much.

But Swansea still ended up with nothing as Rickie Lambert bundled the ball over the line — perhaps with his arm — after the home rearguard got themselves in a mess.

First Jordi Amat could not clear Steven Davis's lofted ball into the box, then Ashley Williams's attempt to intervene turned into assist.

The ball looped over Michel Vorm and Lambert shepherded it across the line.

Monk's first task next season will be to make Swansea harder to breach, and it may be that the former central defender needs to look to the transfer market to aid the cause.

There is likely to be a significant turnaround of players at the Liberty this summer, with a handful of Laudrup signings likely to move on as Monk looks to make his mark on the squad.

"I am not going to talk about what I've spoken to the chairman about, but of course there will be comings and goings," Monk said.

"That happens at every club every year, and it will be the same here."

There may also be slight changes to the backroom staff, with Monk likely to bring in at least one new face to work alongside him next season.

Monk will look for fresh ideas on and off the pitch as Swansea look to improve on a spluttering campaign.

It has not been a terrible season. If Swansea can dig out victory on the final day at Sunderland next weekend, they will end on 42 points — only four shy of what Laudrup's team managed last term.

Given that they have had Europe to contend with as well, Swansea could argue that they have not been that bad and certainly, mere survival is something to celebrate in the top division.

Another wedge of television cash is now heading Swansea's way which, if used wisely, can further strengthen their chances of making a home at the top level.

With no Europa League football to worry about next season, Swansea ought to find it easier to compete consistently in the top flight.

"Considering this year was our first experience of Europe, we have actually done quite well on the whole," Monk said.

"But it's still disappointing because of the standards we have.

"It's strange. We have been in Europe and we have got 39 points, and we are calling it disappointing and a poor season.

"It makes you think: 'Imagine if we had a good season'."

Swansea's supporters have had plenty of positive campaigns to enjoy over the last decade or so.

The club's board of directors believe Monk can deliver another in 2014-15.

Now comes the challenge of proving them right.

Garry Monk Swansea City

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  • tafia  |  May 06 2014, 5:19PM

    Something the board seems to have forgotten, it was only in Feb just prior to ML sacking that the board was asking of ML to take GM on with the coaching staff while he started his coaching ticket...and here we are 3 mths later no coaching ticket just an average performance mainly against poor teams being selected as Manager of a BPL Club...the mind boggles!!!

    |   14
  • tafia  |  May 06 2014, 5:17PM

    You obviously didnt click on my link its ref Bony being names in a possible tsfr to Borussia Dortmund for 20m

  • KP287  |  May 06 2014, 4:22PM

    Actually a 26% win rate! and what experienced manager or coach would come in as a number 2, no one of any substance. The points we would get from that rate over the season 29, is that a good foundation to choose the next manager, and be confident he could improve the results, attract quality players and take us forward, I think not. Monk continually moans about our defending, he was a defender if he can't sort that out, how on earth will he have the ability to coach a creative midfield and a top quality group of finishers up front. I also agree that the board need to make an announcement, explaining any decision they come to. His arrogance knows no bounds, prove the doubters wrong with a win rate of only 26%...

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  • tafia  |  May 06 2014, 12:37PM
  • White_Rock  |  May 06 2014, 7:52AM

    Yes. A sub-30% win rate and no other candidates interviewed is him getting the job on merit. Don't make me laugh. This is the club trying to do things on the cheap and being afraid of big personalities. Monk will fail. Hopefully the board will recognise this before it's too late to salvage our Premier League status.

    |   28
  • yankytaff  |  May 05 2014, 1:03PM

    dim_amser I hope you're right, I can't remember ever hoping so much that @ some point others will be able to say to me I told you so re GM success. As for Saturday performance it's not the 1st such performance we've seen this season, it was the same against W.Ham, Hull, W Brom and Palace and B'ham in the cup, too many times for it to be a temporary blip.

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  • dim_amser  |  May 05 2014, 12:46PM

    Assuming the rumours are correct and Garry Monk gets the manager's job, hopefully we will be able to attract a few good players willing to take the chance of playing for Swansea under an untried manager. I'm sure the Board of Directors at Swansea are fully confident of Garry Monk's ability to attract and select good quality players and experienced coaching staff, as well as his ability to create a successful and unified Premiership team utilising the skills and abilities of the new and current players (well, those choose to remain with us after the summer transfer window closes). Not entirely sure that Garry Monk will stay with Swansea once he's proved himself as a manager but here's hoping the Board is right and it really is a plan for the long term. Also hoping that Saturday's unenthusiastic performance was a temporary blip!

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  • yankytaff  |  May 05 2014, 12:19PM

    The board must know whether or not they're going to appoint GM. they should either announce GM has the job or a decision has not yet been made, if the finer points of the contract have not been agreed the statement could say it was an offer subject to contract agreement ,these rumours have gone on long enough, supporters deserve better.

    |   3
  • Lynbaz  |  May 05 2014, 12:00PM

    By merit, Abertawe? Well I wasn't happy with the performances against Palace, Hull, WBA and Southampton They were plain terrible. The two wins against Villa and Newcastle were hardy convincing either despite the scorelines, as we were outplayed for large periods of both games. I see no improvement and there is a lot of wishful thinking about Monk who just does not have the experience to take us on. If Monk is appointed, remember this post because we will struggle. The Premier League is no place for inexperience.

    |   20
  • pengryjack_06  |  May 05 2014, 11:47AM

    If Monks is getting the job then good luck to him he has earned it. He has the natural enthusiasm and loves the Club. Although that may not be enough, I would rather have that than see a lazy oddball walk through the door who does not care a tuppence for SCFC. Some of these foreign managers only see us as a stepping stone to a bigger team and we are all fed up with those people and I think so is Huw Jenkins. I would like to see GM bring in an experienced assistant though who has been there and done it at the top level.

    |   -16