On the face of it the departure of Courtney Baker-Richardson and Jefferson Montero is not going to damage any chances we may have had next season but the fact that other key first team squad members are not (yet) on the retained list makes for worrying times.
Given our current form in the league (remember those 41 points from 34 games) and a seeming increased reliance next season on youth it does seem to point more in the direction of us battling at the wrong end of the league table next season.
I don’t want to be the prophet of doom and gloom when I think about this and things could definitely be far worse given the precarious nature of football finances at the moment. That reality was hit home quickly yesterday with the news that Wigan were entering administration and they are unlikely to be the last – victims of not just their time in the Premier League but victims of a pandemic that could rip the heart and soul out of community football.
We have talked many times about just how damaging the lack of desire to see a pay impact on the playing side of clubs (which is by far the majority expenditure for pretty much every club) and it could be that more and more clubs could end up relying on youth next time around.
It is difficult to know right now what side’s squads will look like next term and it is certainly close on impossible to see too many sides in the Championship going on a spending spree, not even those that eventually fall out of the Premier League to join us. It could yet mean that the likes of Dyer, Naughton and Routledge do end up signing new contracts despite not being on the retained list just yet . Whilst in years gone by they may have been able to secure that final signing on fee elsewhere that money may just not be in the game and could see them extend their stay at Swansea.
Given the likely nature of our squad for next season retaining those three could be essential given their experience at the higher level as well as this one. Our desire to rely on youth next season could also be a reason why we end up retaining Steve Cooper despite the poor form of the team and that is cause of his perceived ability to get the best out of young players. Let’s hope we see that ability in spades if that is to be the case.
Overall though I have to say that the retained list worries me unless we can add some experienced names to it because on the face of the below it is not a squad that will find Championship football easy. Let’s hope this isn’t the next chapter of the next level
Retained: Joel Asoro, Andre Ayew, Steven Benda, Jake Bidwell, Matthew Blake, George Byers, Ben Cabango, Rio Campbell, Bersant Celina, Oli Cooper, Brandon Cooper, Liam Cullen, Yan Dhanda, Jack Evans, Jay Fulton, Jordon Garrick, Josh Gould, Jordi Govea, Matt Grimes, Declan John, Joe Lewis, Barrie McKay, Kristoffer Peterson, Connor Roberts, Joe Rodon, Tivonge Rushesha,