Swansea City Transfer Window 2012 Preview

So with Situ and Donnelly both 99% confirmed, who should Brendan Rodgers have his eye on during the January transfer window?

Swansea's maiden Premier League journey has been a success so far. Many pundits predicted the Swans to be rock bottom and possibly even surpass Derby's record of the least points achieved in a season but with 2012 around the corner, things are looking positive in South Wales. The team are sitting in 14th place, 5 points from the relegation zone but also 3 points from 9th. The team ethos of playing the ball on the ground and keeping possession has been maintained to good effect, the home form and defensive efforts have been nothing short of spectacular for a promoted team and the pundits are slowly retracting their previous predictions. However, whilst we have performed higher than expectations, the club aren't satisfied quite yet. Brendan Rodgers has indicated the desire to bring in "four to six new players" in the January transfer window. Since that original statement in late November it has been now refined to "the emphasis will be on quality, not quantity" so there may have been some disagreements with quite how many players will be brought in but Rodgers' hasn't twiddled his thumbs in doing so. Northern Irish prospect Rory Donnelly has already agreed terms to make the move from Cliftonville to Swansea in what has turned into quite a coup for the Swans. There was stiff competition for the up and coming striker from both teams in Merseyside. Liverpool confirmed their interest and Everton even outbid Swansea yet Donnelly re-iterated his desire to work with Rodgers and the Swansea set-up. Darnel Situ should also be another signing that was expected before the mass rumours start flying in. The French defender was supposed to sign in the Summer transfer window but a mix up with FIFA and international clearance prevented him from being registered in the 25 man squad. Situ has been training with the club since and will be expected to clear his paperwork during the January transfer window so that he can ease the burden on Swansea's back four.

What They Need

So with Situ and Donnelly both 99% confirmed, who should Brendan Rodgers have his eye on during the January transfer window? Even with Situ looking likely to join the ranks the strength in depth of the back line is limited. Jazz Richards has stepped up to the plate well, considering his lack of experience, and we have yet to fully see the abilities of Vangelis Moras or Federico Bessone at this level. However it is the uncertainty of whether Steven Caulker will continue his deal past January or not that will determine whether or not the signing of another defender is essential or not. Tottenham have the option to re-call Caulker in January and with the England U21 international putting in impressive performances, Harry Redknapp may choose to take advantage of this clause. This potential risk could be solved by Middlesbrough defender Matthew Bates. Bates has been on Rodgers' radar in the past and the player is out of contract in the Summer. Whether Swansea will opt for cut price deal for Bates or possibly wait for a free transfer at the end of the season is yet to be seen but this long-term target could end up a Swansea player at some point. Whilst the strength in depth in midfield is adequate at the moment, an eagerly chased target for Swansea is Chelsea's Josh McEachran. McEachran seems to be the prospect coming out of the Chelsea academy but Andre Villas-Boas has failed to give the youngster many chances to break into the first team so a loan elsewhere could give McEachran the same boost that Daniel Sturridge received during his tenure at Bolton last season. The Swans aren't alone in their interest for the young midfielder though. Both Aston Villa and Bolton are in the hunt for the player and with Bolton in talks for Gary Cahill to move to Chelsea there is a good chance that McEachran might move the other way as a subsidary payment alongside the transfer fee. One thing that Swansea do have over their rivals for McEachran's signature is Rodgers' experience with the player during his time at Chelsea, which may be the pocket ace that the Swans require to get their man. Scoring goals from midfield has certainly been a difficulty for Swansea this year though and Brendan Rodgers has gone on record to say that he will try to resolve this problem within the January transfer window. A man who seems to top this wishlist is a player he managed at Reading previously, Gylfi Sigurdsson. The Icelandic international moved from Reading to Hoffenheim in an £8m deal a couple of years ago but has struggled to string together a run in the first team this season. Sigurdsson could be the ideal component for this Swansea team and a six-month loan deal with a view to a permanent move has been strongly rumoured, but he's not the only option Rodgers has considered. NEC midfielder John Goossens has been linked with a move to South Wales and could further increase the Dutch contingent at the Liberty Stadium. The Dutchman can play on the wing or as an attacking midfielder and would prove to be a versatile solution for the manager. Rumours were rife with Goossens coming to South Wales earlier last month, with a supposed £650,000 deal being agreed, but there has been little movement since. Finally with Rory Donnelly's signing imminent, the previous rumours of re-emerging target Jonathan Soriano from Barcelona B and Danny Graham's old team mate Marvin Sordell from Watford look extremely unlikely. Considering the lone striker role that is implemented in Swansea's tactics, the three strikers already on the books, consisting of Danny Graham, Leroy Lita and Luke Moore, not to mention the addition of Donnelly should give Rodgers enough depth for his front line.


With Huw Jenkins' stringent control on income and expenditure of contracts and transfers to ensure the safe and efficient running of the club, there may need to be some departures of fringe players to lower the wage bill during the window. Players such as Andrea Orlandi, Tom Butler and David Cotterill look most likely to be culled after minor involvements with the first team this season. Even new signing Jose Moreira, who may be demanding a larger wage bill than the run of a mill fringe player, could be shown the door after Michel Vorm's exceptional start to the season and Gerhard Tremmel keeping the bench occupied. Craig Beattie has already been shipped out to Watford on loan but is due to return to Swansea next week. Whether his deal will be extended is yet to be decided but the Scotsman has rarely figured in Sean Dyche's plans so the return should be no doubt imminent. With four strikers now vying for the sole position up front, it's hard to see Beattie being a Swansea player for much longer. It may not just be fringe players leaving the Liberty Stadium in January though. Swansea's impressive style of play has showcased the talent of some of their key players which could have the heads of some top clubs turning. Players such as Michel Vorm, Joe Allen, Scott Sinclair and Nathan Dyer are all key to Swansea's ethos but a handful of rival Premier League clubs have been rumoured to be interested in the group of players. Rumours suggest that Kenny Dalglish is, or has been, interested in Joe Allen and Nathan Dyer whilst Fulham would be willing to go as far as £10 million for Scott Sinclair. Of course, there are no concrete claims to support these supposed targets but that is the beauty of the transfer window. So it'll no doubt be an important month for Swansea not only to keep a hold of their prized possessions but also to strengthen their squad in sight of a second consecutive season in the big time.

Swansea City fan, Star Wars obsessive and general lover of all things football and gaming related.