With little more than two months of the campaign left to be played, Swansea City fans were given a timely boost on Monday night.
The Jack Army were treated to an impressive 2-0 win over West Brom, a result that brought an end to Swansea’s six-game run without victory away from home.
There were plenty of positives to be taken from the triumph at The Hawthorns Stadium, particularly when it comes to the long-term project in place.
Russell Martin is not even a third of the way into his three-year contract with the club, but there is hope for the bigger picture when it comes to the dream of returning to the Premier League.
The current coaching staff have long accepted that the 2021/22 campaign was going to be one that included moments of pain.
But after securing a league double over the Baggies to move on to 41 points for the season, Sky pundit Glenn Murray stated he expects Swansea to improve on their league position under Martin next term.
“They talked about being a young squad and how it was an extra step, and this is a transitional year for them. I think next year they’re going to be dangerous,” Murray said on Sky Sports.
“I think they [fans] display patience because they have to. They’ve spent the money, it’s run out now. They’ve now halved the budget – that in itself is a feat.
“To be playing the way they are and be bringing in a new breed of players through and coming to places like West Brom and showing courage and character, I think it’s testament to the manager.”
Swansea expect another significant squad turnaround in the summer, with Martin keen to bring in further recruits to add to his current talents.
With 14 games still to be played this term, fellow pundit Hal Robson-Kanu believes the Swans need to end the campaign strongly to ensure they can hit the ground running in Martin’s second season at the helm.
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“In this league, to play how they’re looking to play and that methodology, the Brendan Rodgers way of building out from the back and hurting teams by playing through the lines, it takes massive courage,” said the ex-Wales forward.
“Russell Martin is building a team to get results through that way of playing football. To successfully play that way of football in the Championship is extremely hard.
“Whether they can consistently achieve results over the course of a nine-month season will be very interesting to see, but what he’s hopefully looking to do here is put in the ground work to have a platform from which he and the players can build from going into next season.
“The manager has said to the team he wants them to finish the season strong.
“It’s runs likes this where they are playing teams in and amongst them and potentially below them where they can continue to apply that philosophy and style, but more importantly, get results.
“It’s a great opportunity in the next six games for them to really test themselves.”
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