Crystal Palace Manager Tips Swans For Success

Tuesday, 20 May 2008, 8:20
2 mins read

Both sides will compete together next season in the second tier of English football for the first time for many years at that level and with Hull and Bristol City competing on Saturday for a Premiership place it has led teams to believe that anything is possible.

It is only four years ago that Hull escaped the basement division of the league and Bristol City were promoted last season from League One.  But on Saturday both will compete for "the richest prize in football" and for the winner the promised land will await next season.

For either it is likely to be a temporary stay of just one season with most pundits predicting an immediate return but with far more healthy coffers and the ability to say "we were there"

And that is something that both South Wales clubs would like to believe could happen to them and, unsurprisingly, both managers are re-iterating their belief that it could happen.

“I’m confident that, if I’m given the time, I can get this club to the Premiership,” said Martinez in today's Western Mail.

“It would be a big mistake to just try and somehow get there quickly and then not be good enough to remain there.

“For that I believe five, six or seven years is the normal amount of time needed to be a Premiership force. But our end goal is that we can be a top-15 club in the UK.

“That is achievable because of the fan base we have got, the talented squad we have got and the people we have got on the board.”

Cardiff boss Jones – fresh from their FA Cup Final appearance on Saturday was in agreement “We can achieve the same and play at the same level as Middlesbrough and Bolton,” he said.

“We are building something like Middlesbrough here.

“It wasn’t too long ago that Middlesbrough had no training facilities and Ayresome Park was falling down.

“Bolton Wanderers was the same. Now they are all in the Premiership. If it’s done right and the vision is right, we can reach that level.”

And whilst you would expect these words from the two respective managers, to hear it from one of their peers was maybe less expected but nonetheless appreciated.   Warnock – whose side missed out in the play offs to Bristol City said “Is staying in the Premiership about more than having money? No, not really

“There are a number of factors, but these all basically boil down to how much money you have behind you. You can talk about stadiums and plush training grounds, but these all come at a price.

“You need top facilities to attract the quality of players you need to stay up, but then you’ve got to pay their wages as well.”

“I can’t see any reason why Cardiff or Swansea cannot take the step up

“Swansea have a nice stadium up and running and Cardiff’s is set to open. That is important because one vital factor is a fan base. You need the supporters turning up to sustain you.

“For me Cardiff and Swansea are football areas who have the necessary fan bases just waiting there. New stadiums bring people along, modern supporters won’t put up with sub-standard facilities and I don’t blame them.

“What Cardiff achieved by reaching the FA Cup final was fantastic and Dave Jones will want to build on that now.

“Roberto Martinez is highly-rated. There is no reason either club should not make it up and perhaps stay there. But that is one of the most difficult things to do in the modern game.”

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.
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