Swansea City midfielder George Byers has revealed he has undergone successful surgery following the ankle injury he suffered during the 3-2 defeat to Derby earlier this month.
Byers was replaced at half-time during the Swans’ clash with Derby at the Liberty Stadium on February 8th, and it later emerged that the midfielder had suffered a high ankle sprain which will keep him sidelined for the rest of the season.
The former Watford man has now confirmed that the surgery procedure on his ankle was a successful one, but he will now watch the remainder of Swansea’s Championship matches from the sidelines as he begins his road to recovery.
In today’s FLW Six Pointer, we take a closer look at Byers’ injury blow and what it means for the Swans…
Firstly, what is Byers’ current situation following his injury?
“Byers had been a regular feature in the Swansea side prior to his significant injury blow, but the midfielder will now not feature again until the 2020/21 season with his ankle problem keeping him out of the club’s final 15 games of the current season.
“All he can now do is focus on making a full recovery from the issue by the club’s pre-season campaign over the summer, but he will be unable to have a say in which division the Swans will be preparing to play in when the summer does come around.”
How had he been performing for Swansea?
“Byers had established himself as an important figure in the Swansea side under Graham Potter last season, and he continued to further cement his place in the side under the guidance of Steve Cooper this term as he played a key part for the Swans.
“The 23-year-old had made 33 appearances for the South Wales outfit prior to his injury, during which time he netted five goals and registered one assist, and he showcased his midfield versatility by playing in advanced and deeper central roles.
“It is clear that Byers had become one of Cooper’s favourites in the side, particularly seeing as he started all six of Swansea’s league matches leading up to his injury.”
How will Swansea replace his presence in the side?
“This setback means Swansea will be breathing an even bigger sigh of relief that they recruited the services of Conor Gallagher in January, as this means Cooper still has enough midfield options to see the Swans through until the end of the campaign.
“Yan Dhanda and Jay Fulton have now both taken it in turns to start in place of Byers during Swansea’s last two league matches, and it appears as though these two players could now be used on rotation between now and the end of the season.
“Cooper may adapt his midfield set-up to Swansea’s opponent with Dhanda providing more of an attacking outlet for the Swans, while Fulton would be utilised to bring some more defensive-midfield solidity to the Swans’ starting line-up.”
Do you think Byers will be missed by the Swans?
“Byers’ absence certainly represents a clear setback for Swansea given they will need all the reinforcement they can get in the final months of the season, but the important thing is that the Swans still have the players to fill in for Byers.
“However, the 23-year-old had added both passion and maturity to Swansea’s midfield prior to his season-ending setback, and the fact he is capable of providing both attacking and defensive outlets means he will be missed by Cooper and the Swans.”
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Should Swansea have signed more reinforcement to account for possible injuries?
“The Swans did add Gallagher to their ranks in January, but the fact Tom Carroll was released from his contract means Swansea are still a midfielder down following Byers’ injury.
“I think that Swansea would have added another central midfielder in an ideal world, particularly seeing as Fulton and Dhanda sometimes lack consistency, and this is perhaps a mistake that could come back to haunt the club.
“However, Swansea’s transfer business should not be criticised too heavily as they did manage to make some excellent signings in January.”
Finally, do you think Byers’ injury will have an impact on the Swans’ aspirations this term?
“I’m not sure Byers’ injury will have a profound impact on whether Swansea finish in the top six or not this campaign, but the fact Cooper now has one less midfield option to pick from will certainly not do them any good.
“It will only become a serious issue if another player suffers an injury over the coming weeks, but Byers’ midfield versatility will still be missed by the Liberty Stadium outfit.”