Thursday, June 1, 2023

Swansea City Enquire About This French Defensive Powerhouse: A Shrewd Deal If it Materialises?

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Prasoon Sur
Prasoon is a law student who lives in the North East of India. Wildly innovative, football is more than a passion for him.

Liverpool outcast Mamadou Sakho, despite being out of favour at Liverpool, is still very much a wanted commodity in the Premier League. The Frenchman signed a new long-term contract to keep him at the Anfield, though it looks highly unlikely that he would stay beyond this transfer window. Amidst the teams who are in the battle to sign him, the report of Swansea City being interested in grabbing him is of latest origin.

After 21 league games, the Welsh-based club are placed 20th in the league as their defence has severely let them down. They have conceded 49 goals already and if necessary changes are not made, things aren’t likely to get any better. In the prospective acquisition of Sakho by the Swans, one can’t help but wonder whether the move can actually help them or not.

The 26-year-old’s off-field tantrums had forced manager Jürgen Klopp to overlook him throughout this campaign. It all started when he was sent back home from Liverpool’s 2016 pre-season tour by Klopp due to indiscipline and improper rant on Snapchat. Also, UEFA handed him a 30-day suspension after he was tested positive for a banned substance, which crippled his Liverpool career.

However, he is a fine player and just needs to resurrect his career at a club which values his worth. He possesses a very strong physique, provides himself as a formidable shield at the back, commands the back line and is phenomenal in aerial duels. Apart from what has been mentioned, he keeps the game ticking with his short passes, breaks the opponents’ attacks with excellent tackles and blocks and has plenty of experience in the top flight.

Frankly speaking, he is a lucrative option for a side like Swansea City who lost their captain and central defender, Ashley Williams, to Everton in the summer transfer window.

Swansea have failed to find the perfect replacement for Williams, but now that they have Sakho under their radar, they now arguably have considered the right replacement. In 2015-16 campaign (where Sakho gained so much of recognition), he was employed on 22 occasions by Liverpool in the league, where he mustered 1.4 tackles, 1.7 interceptions, 6.2 clearances and 1 block every game on an average, thus enlisting him in the league of elite defenders in the top tier of English football.

Knowing that the pictures of battles shall be painted with the brush of hostility by the Premier League, Swansea’s aim of seeing the dawn of next season in the top tier of English football is the least they need to do this season and signing a resolute defender like Sakho will lay the foundation for cultivating a rigidity in their defence for the rest of the season.

Statistics Credit: WhoScored.

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