December 28 – It was always a somewhat risky appointment. But before he had managed to get his feet firmly under the table, Bob Bradley, the first American coach to take charge of a top-flight English club, has been shown the door at Swansea City after only 85 days.
A 4-1 home defeat by West Ham on Boxing Day was Swansea’s seventh in 11 games since Bradley took over on October 3.
Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins said: “We felt we had to make the change with half the Premier League season remaining. With the club going through such a tough time, we have to try and find the answers to get ourselves out of trouble.
“Personally, I have nothing but praise for Bob. He is a good man; a good person who gave everything to the job. His work-rate is phenomenal and we wish him well for the future.”
None of that ultimately saved Bradley’s job in a league that demands instant results. The fact is that before he arrived Swansea were above the relegation zone albeit only on goal difference.
“I knew exactly what I was getting into when I came to Swansea and realised the hardest part was always going to be getting points in the short run,” said Bradley, the highly experienced former coach of the US national team who has also worked in Egypt, Norway and France.
“But I believe in myself and I believe in going for it. That’s what I’ve always told my players. Football can be cruel and to have a chance, you have to be strong.”
The early favourite to replace Bradley is Welsh and Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs but he was overlooked first time round and it is by no means certain he would accept having reportedly been interviewed twice by the Swansea board before Bradley was appointed instead.
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