League One Season Preview 2006/07 - Swansea City

 


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Swansea City

Odds: 14/1

Last Five Seasons
2005/06 - 6 (League One), 2004/05 - 3 (League Two, Promoted), 2003/04 - 10 (League Two), 2002/03 - 21 (League Two), 2001/02 - 20 (League Two).

2005/06 Cup Progress
FA Cup First Round vs Stockport County (a) - lost 2-0.
Carling Cup First Round vs Reading (a) - lost 3-1 after extra time.
Football League Trophy winners vs Carlisle United (n) - won 2-1.

Top Goal Scorer 2005/06: Lee Trundle (striker) - 21 goals.

Players In
Darren Pratley (Fulham - £100,000).

Players Out
Sam Ricketts (Hull City - £300,000), Lee Thorpe (Torquay United - Free), Adrian Forbes (Blackpool - Free), Mark Pritchard (Aldershot - Free), Brian Murphy (Released), Roberto Martinez (Released), Chad Bond (Released).

The 2005/06 campaign for Swansea City was one of initial delight and optimism, but one that ultimately ended in heart break and despair. The Swans were top of League One in November and were scoring goals for fun, such as their 7-1 early season drubbing of local rivals Bristol City.

The second half of the season produced a dismal run of form which saw them win just five of their last 20 league matches and top goal scorer Lee Trundle being consigned to the bench. Despite this, the Swans enjoyed a successful Football League Trophy campaign where they beat Carlisle United in the final.

Hopes of automatic promotion were long erased by May and their season took one final turn for the worse when terrible penalties in the shoot out from both Alan Tate and Adebayo Akinfenwa saw Barnsley earn a place in the Championship.

Chairman Huw Jenkins could not resist a sly dig at bitter rivals Cardiff City, claiming it was prospective club record signing Dean Leacock who they wanted all summer and not Roger Johnson who signed for the Bluebirds from under the League One club's noses. Leacock was set to join for a £375,000 fee but with everything all but sealed, the transfer spectacularly collapsed leaving Jenkins rather red faced.

Manager Kenny Jackett has also been linked with Cottagers midfielder Zesh Rehman but will have to do without Wales international defender Sam Ricketts. The former Oxford United trainee joined Hull City in the summer for £300,000 to fulfil his ambition of playing at a higher level. Ricketts had made over 100 appearances for the Swans since his free transfer arrival from Telford in July 2003.

Verdict
Swansea were a poor side after Christmas but were a little unfortunate not to win promotion via the play offs. Jackett will need his team to rediscover their early season form otherwise they may not even make the top six next term.

David Walker runs a free bets website. You can watch live football online during the 2006/07 season.

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