The few weeks prior to a summer transfer window are always rife with speculation and supposed backroom disputes over signings and finances, but an uproar that has shocked many is that between Swansea manager Michael Laudrup, his agent Bayram Tutumlu and the club’s chairman Huw Jenkins.
Swansea have always been a club that, on the outside, appear to be solid and united in their goals – both on and off the field. The past few weeks however have seen that illusion shattered, with rumours circling about a row that cast doubt on Laudrup’s future at the Liberty Stadium. The disagreement was said to be over a perceived lack of attention from the board in the run up to the transfer window that gets underway at the beginning of July.
The internal dispute was then coupled with Laudrup being called to the Netherlands for failure to pay a £2.5m tax bill from the Dane’s time at former club Ajax. He was summoned to court after the Eredivisie outfit took out an advert in a domestic newspaper, publicly seeking as well as naming and shaming the Swans boss.
Affairs appeared to be at boiling point when it was revealed that Jenkins and the majority of Swansea’s directors had severed all ties with Laudrup’s agent Tutumlu.
Matters appeared to have calmed somewhat in the aftermath of those announcements, with Tutumlu later stating in an interview with BBC
Laudrup also took to the press soon after, stating he is planning his future around his position at the south Wales club, but he does have a number of concerns around his side’s transfer plans.
Jenkins, however, acted swiftly in order to address these concerns: “Myself, the manager and our recruitment staff are all agreed on the quality of players we would like to sign to help us remain competitive in the Premier League,” Jenkins told the South Wales Evening Post.
“There are substantial funds available to strengthen our squad over the summer while we are also in the privileged position, because of the way we’ve managed our finances over the years, where we do not need to sell anyone to fund those new recruits.”
Although the hostility now appears to have been reduced to a minimum after what was a quickly escalating situation, proceedings on at the Liberty Stadium are still not what they were four to six months ago, where League Cup success and Europa League qualification were all on the horizon. The situation could easily explode again, especially if finances for transfers are restricted by Jenkins and directors – an issue about which Laudrup has already raised concerns, and his agent has already stated he is unhappy regarding.
Only time will tell whether the events of the last few weeks was just a bit of a lovers’ tiff, or could this be a sign of things to come. Has the sudden rise of Swansea City already reached its peak?
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