As a player who stands in fifth position in Swansea City’s all-time league appearance makers, Leon Britton is held in high regard by everyone at the Liberty Stadium.
And the man who made 460 league outings for the Welsh club has returned in a new capacity as a mentor to the club’s academy players – but there’s a twist.
39-year-old Britton will put his boots back on for the club’s under-23 side, where you are allowed a limited amount of overage players and we’ve seen the likes of Manchester United do this in recent times with former Republic of Ireland international Paul McShane.
Britton still plays for Cymru South side Ammerford but he will be focusing on his new full-time role at Swansea in the near future, and he’s returned after previously departing from his Sporting Director job at the club back in the summer of 2020.
The former midfielder has spoken out for the first time since his new role was confirmed where he admits that this was the right opportunity to make a triumphant return to the Liberty Stadium.
“I have been in these lads’ shoes – I was Britain’s most expensive 16-year-old at the time, but then didn’t really live up to expectations in some people’s eyes,” Britton told the club’s media team regarding his new role.
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“I dropped down from a Premier League club and went to play in League Two, so it was a big learning curve for me.
“I had so many experiences – good and bad – throughout my career, and I think it’s a perfect opportunity for me to pass on my knowledge and help nurture these young players.
“It would have been a really big shame if all of that knowledge wasn’t put to good use.
“There is only one club I want to do that at, and that’s Swansea City.”
Bringing Britton back to the club can only be a good thing as he’s cherished by all fans of Swansea City.
They’ve brought through the likes of Ben Cabango and Liam Cullen in recent years who have made an impact at senior level, and the goal is to produce more talents like that.
And having Britton around to express his wisdom is a smart move to make as he knows the club like the back of his hand.
It may be surreal to see him in a Swansea shirt once again – if only in an under-23 capacity – but this is an important job and one he looks like he’s suited to.