This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Swansea City have produced two of their best performances of the season in back to back wins over Cardiff City and West Bromwich Albion.
Russell Martin’s stock with the Swans’ fan base has never been higher, and the calls for patience while the squad adapted to his bold style of play have finally been answered in the form of local bragging rights and a victory over a newly relegated side.
Jamie Paterson’s performances have been very eye-catching in the two wins, netting an outstanding solo goal on Wednesday evening by nutmegging Kyle Bartley before toe poking into the far corner.
Martin showed the potential of an excellent manager in his time and Milton Keynes Dons and one who it seems likely will be managing in the Premier League in the near future. It has taken time but the Swans are just four points off the play-offs with just under three quarters of the season left to run, why not?
Here, we gathered the thoughts of a selection of FLW writers to see whether or not they can envisage a play-off push coming from Russell Martin’s men…
It is starting to look like Martin has started to find the right formula at Swansea.
Admittedly, it would feel too early to make that assumption based purely off that win over West Brom, but when you combine that with their pretty emphatic victory over Cardiff on Saturday, it does look as though they are starting to really get things right.
Interestingly given the style of play they are employing, Swansea looked to have nailed things down defensively for a few games before that, and they are now adding the goals to that to give them a pretty comprehensive package.
With the amount of time there is remaining in the season, the chance for them to break into the play-offs is definitely still there, and you do feel as though the quality they possess in the squad should make that a possibility as well.
Quiz: Did these 25 Swansea City transfers actually happen?
I think it’s unlikely they’ll make the play-offs to be honest but there’s certainly been improvement and that’s what you want to see when a new manager is in there.
Russell Martin has his style and Swansea’s players appear to have adapted well to it now, I just think there are too many sides in the league that have stronger squads for them to make the top six this campaign.
Of course, it’s not impossible that they’ll make the top six and there are players there that have done it before recently under Steve Cooper so that helps, but I do think they’ll fall short this year.
They won’t have any issues the other way in the table under Martin, though, and I think they can use this season to try and build for a renewed challenge in the campaigns to come.
Having seen Swansea in person earlier on in the season when Martin had only managed four league games, they’ve definitely turned a corner now.
It was evident that his players were still getting used to playing out from the back and exclusively on the floor so they had to suffer from some short-term pain.
They’ve come out the other side of it though playing some really good stuff and the signings Swansea have made in the likes of Ethan Laird, Flynn Downes, Jamie Paterson and Olivier Ntcham, as well as hotshot Joel Piroe, all suit this style to a tee.
I said in the FLW preview show last week that it would only be a matter of time before Swansea blow someone away and that ended up being Cardiff – then they backed that up with an impressive victory over West Brom last night.
The Championship is very open this season and you could not write this team off being play-off contenders whatsoever at this early stage of the season as they definitely have the momentum now to move up the table.