Korey Smith’s departure in the summer of 2020 left a bitter taste in the mouths of many Bristol City fans, who were frustrated by the actions of the club and not the player.
Smith had been a faithful servant of the club for six years, making 196 appearances in total and often wearing the captain’s armband, but was not given the send-off he deserved after it was revealed he would not be offered a new contract.
The midfielder gave everything for the shirt every time he pulled it on and played a key part in many of the greatest moments in City’s recent history, including the 2014/15 double-winning campaign and, of course, ‘that goal’ against Manchester United.
Robins supporters didn’t have to wait too long to find out where the 30-year-old would be plying his trade next as he linked up with Swansea City just five days after his Ashton Gate exit was confirmed.
That move has paid dividends for Smith, who quickly became one of Steve Cooper’s trusted midfield lieutenants and would play a central role in their promotion near-miss last term.
The central midfielder featured 40 times in all competitions for the Swans in 2020/21 – helping them reach the Championship play-off final where they were beaten 2-0 by Brentford.
Cooper’s reign ended in the summer with Russell Martin brought in as the Welshman’s replacement but Smith’s standing in the first team picture has not diminished.
Have Bristol City had a higher or lower average attendance compared to these 23 sides this season?
Injuries have limited his contributions this term but having returned to fitness, the midfielder featured in Swansea’s last three games in the build up to the international break – hinting at further involvement once the Championship gets back underway.
The Swans face Cardiff City on the weekend, meaning Smith will certainly have the full support of the Robins fanbase against their Severnside rivals.