Swansea City will host Birmingham on Saturday at the Swansea.com stadium. The Swans are under new management but will be pushing for promotion once again. Birmingham is looking forward to a new era under fresh ownership at the club.
Preview (Swansea City vs Birmingham)
South Wales has reason to be optimistic considering the Swans’ performance at the close of the previous season. They went nine games without a loss from March to May. Russell Martin’s departure to join newly relegated Southampton has opened the door for Michael Duff to assume control of the team. They will continue to play possession-based football under the direction of the former Barnsley manager.
Swansea lost important players over the summer when left-back Ryan Manning followed his manager to St Mary’s. The continued presence of Joel Piroe from the Netherlands could be crucial to the Swans’ success this season. Jerry Yates, an Englishman who scored an astonishing 14 Championship goals for a Tangarines team that was unable to maintain its second-tier position last season, has signed from recently relegated Blackpool. Birmingham had a summer of significant change both on and off the field. For the first time in a very long time, Bluenoses are looking up rather than anxiously over their shoulders.
Following the official confirmation of Shelby Companies Limited’s acquisition of the club on July 13, which put an end to the club’s troubled seven years under Birmingham Sports Holdings Limited, that day will always have a special place in Blues’ history. The Second City team has made big playing staff additions this summer, bringing in players like Siriki Dembele and Tyler Roberts from Bournemouth and Leeds United, respectively, in addition to adding NFL star Tom Brady to the board of advisors.
No one at the club expects a promotion push this year since the West Midlands team. They have been forced to be frugal with their spending. However, the sales of Tahith Chong and Jobe Bellingham have allowed Blues to make wise team investments. The team coached by John Eustace will be hoping for a repeat of last season’s victory over Swansea. They secured 4-3 in South Wales thanks to an injury-time goal from Auston Trusty.
With Joe Allen and Josh Ginnelly still recovering from their individual injuries, Swansea has a few injury concerns before the start of the season. The midfielder will be trying to establish himself as a regular starter for the Swans this season. With right-back Ethan Laird questionable after missing last weekend’s loss to Peterborough United in a friendly, Eustace has his own fitness concerns as he gets ready to lead his team to South Wales.
If former Manchester United player Laird is unavailable, Marcel Oakley and Josh Williams will compete for that position. Neither has much first-team experience at Blues. The struggle to start alongside Juninho Bacuna and Krystian Bielik in the engine room appears to have been won by Welsh teenager Jordan James. The rivalry for spots in the center of the park has been fierce for the visitors during the preseason. Birmingham’s journey to the Premier League is unlikely to be finished by May. Fans may need to wait a little while before noticing noticeable changes on the field.
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