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Swansea City 2022-23 predictions: Where Martin’s men will finish, the best signing and surprise package to watch

Swansea City 2022-23 predictions: Where Martin’s men will finish, the best signing and surprise package to watch

After the chaos of last summer which saw Swansea City head into the new season with key players having left and a new manager just days into the job, this year has been a far calmer affair.

Yes, we have seen the disruption of losing one of their best players in Flynn Downes, but the signing of Joe Allen has gone a long way to resolve that particular issue.

Head coach Russell Martin frequently pointed to his late arrival last term as a reason behind Swansea’s occasionally laboured performances. This time around he’s had a full pre-season to work with his players – old and new – as he looks to instil further his blueprint on this squad.

READ MORE: Swansea City squad numbers for the new campaign are revealed

How will they fare during the 2022-23 season? Here our writers give their predictions for the campaign ahead…

Ian Mitchelmore – New signings can inspire top six finish

Most exciting summer signing?

I wasn’t covering the Swans during his first spell at the club, but I’m itching to watch Joe Allen in action. However, I’m going to select Harry Darling in this category.

Russell Martin is a huge admirer of the defender and has been keen to re-unite with the former MK Dons man since he became Swansea boss last summer. The central defender is a demon in the air and more than comfortable with the ball at his feet.

And, as last season proves, he’s got an eye for goal too. Swansea did remarkably well to beat other clubs to the signing of Darling, and I’m looking forward to the 22-year-old proving why he’s so highly thought of by the club’s coaching staff.

Surprise player/one to watch?

Matty Sorinola. His first season at Belgian side Union SG had plenty of tough moments, but his energy, athleticism and confidence reminds me of former Swan Ethan Laird, and it feels like he will want to prove a point in the Championship this season.

He fits the bill when it comes to what Russell Martin wants from a wing-back. while his versatility is a plus. Having familiar faces such as Andy Fisher and Harry Darling around him will help, along with the likes of Martin, Matt Gill and Dean Thornton on the coaching staff.

Where will Swansea finish and why?

Things can only get better, right? All in all, it’s been a very productive summer for Swansea, particularly given the early captures of Harry Darling, Nathan Wood, Matty Sorinola and some chap called Joe Allen. The defence was a concern for Russell Martin’s side last season, and they’ve addressed it long before a ball has even been kicked in the 2022-23 campaign.

The same applies to attacking set plays following the addition of Andy Parslow as set-piece coach. The squad have also had a full pre-season together, unlike last year while they are no longer adapting to a drastic change in style of play. Covid-19 hasn’t been a concern either.

The penny has well and truly dropped with Michael Obafemi, while Joel Piroe may well stay despite Premier League interest in him. Add to that, Jamie Paterson’s contract situation being resolved and things are looking rather rosy.

Flynn Downes will of course be a huge loss, but in Allen Swansea have a ready made replacement who has bags of experience. I really do have a good feeling about the upcoming campaign. A few more additions (which I expect to happen) then a top six push is on.

Predicted position: 6th

Mathew Davies – Keeping Piroe is the key

Most exciting summer signing?

It has to be Joe. It’s always been Joe.

It is obviously disappointing to lose a player of the calibre of Flynn Downes, an individual so integral to how Russell Martin wants to play football. But getting a fee of £11million – rising to £14m if all add-ons are reached – and replacing him with free agent Joe Allen is good business.

Every Swans fan knows what Allen is still capable of having seen him perform to a high standard for Wales in the recent internationals. His stats from his final season at Stoke also show there is plenty in him yet. He may not have the legs and dynamism of a 23-year-old Downes but seeing him in a white jersey again will be an exciting prospect.

Surprise player/one to watch?

Martin made such an effort to bring Harry Darling to SA1 and only good things have been said about him before and after he was signed.

He comes with a reputation as a ball-playing centre-half and strikes me as another Downes-type acquisition. It was clear pretty much straight away with Downes that he would play in the Premier League at some point in his career. Not many would have predicted it would happen within 12 months but football is like that sometimes.

Darling could be the next cab off the rank. I’m intrigued to see how he copes at Championship level.

Where will Swansea finish and why?

Everything suggests Swansea should improve on their 15th-placed finish of last season. At the time of writing they have strengthened their defence, added some height and physicality to the backline and replaced Downes with a like-for-like player in Allen.

Where they finish is likely dependent on whether they can keep hold of Joel Piroe. His 24 goals last term were huge for Swansea and if he can be kept and he can replicate that form, they could have a crack at things.

Swans fans will be hoping their main man does indeed stay, amid interest in him from Premier League teams.

Predicted position: 8th

Tom Coleman – Lack of strength in depth will tell in the end

Most exciting summer signing?

I really like the look of Harry Darling. A centre-back that oozes confidence on the ball and loves to meander forward. He looks an absolute beast in the air too.

Russell Martin had barely unpacked his things at Fairwood before deciding he wanted the defender, and I can’t wait to see what he’ll bring to the table.

One to watch?

I’m going to plump for Michael Obafemi. The striker had a tricky start to his Swansea City career, but was simply sensational during the second half of the season – his brace against Cardiff City obviously being a particular highlight.

His antics on the club’s social media accounts have only further cemented his status as a bit of a cult hero with fans and, having thrived on the international scene with Ireland over the summer, I just feel the stage is set for him to go out and really light up this division.

Where will Swansea finish and why?

Swansea’s best XI is, in my opinion, good enough to compete with most sides in this division. Indeed, if Obafemi picks up where he left off, and Joel Piroe gets anywhere close to his tally of 24 goals last term, they are going to be a hard team to stop.

Everyone appears to be moving in the same direction, and everyone has bought into what the boss wants to try and do.

But there are a couple of things that do niggle away at me a little. When it clicks for them, Swansea play some box office football. When it doesn’t, it can be quite painful to watch. Indeed, the Swans were on the end of a few chastening hidings last season.

Achieving the sort of consistency needed to thrive in a division as competitive as the Championship will be a massive challenge and, after being afforded the full summer of preparations he lacked last season, Martin might well find that fans are not quite as patient this time around.

Top six always has to be the aim, but I’m not entirely convinced there’s enough strength in depth in this squad to get there this season, although I wouldn’t be surprised if they flirted with a play-off spot for a while.

Predicted position: 9th

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