Swansea City reported back to pre season training yesterday for the new 2013/2014 season. Michael Laudrup has made three new signings for the Swans and has also re-captured De Guzman, who will be joining the squad for a second season long loan.
Swansea’s first signing of the season comes in the form of Real Betis midfielder Jose Canas (26). Canas was a product of the Betis academy where he played three seasons for the first team making 66 appearances.
The Swans made an offer for the player back in January for a reported 800k Euros. With Canas on the final few months of his contract many people would have thought Real Betis would have accepted the offer but they declined as they made Europe their top priority. In April 2013, before the season in Spain was over, Canas refused to renew his expiring contract with Betis, choosing instead to join Swansea on a long term contract for free.
Canas also rejected West Brom in favour to join the Welsh club. He said his decision was down to Michael Laudrup’s presence at the Welsh club, an idol to Canas when growing up.
Jose Canas is a defensive midfielder who can read the game very well. He is sublime with the ball at his feet and can get out of tricky situations, he is hard working and will cover a lot of ground with his high energy. He has the ability to see a pass in the final third and his aggression means he loves to tackle.
Laudrup’s second signing is central defender, Jordi Amat (21), from Spanish team Espanyol.
Amat spent last season out on loan to overachievers Rayo Vallecano. In the three years Amat spend in the first team for Espanyol he made 41 appearances which averages thirteen games a season.
The Espanyol board came to a decision to loan Jordi Amat out to fellow La Liga team Rayo where he made 27 appearances scoring 1 goal which was a spectacular finish against Real Valladolid.
On the 27th June, Swansea City announced the club had signed Amat on a four year deal for a transfer fee of £2.5m. This was a transfer that came out of the blue, surprising all Swansea fans. He will fit the bill perfectly at the Liberty City stadium. He has made a number of appearances in La Liga at such a young age he has also featured for Spain at every single junior level.
Jordi Amat is a central defender at 6`0, he is quick and also very strong. Like all Spaniards he has great technical ability and he is a great tackler when both sliding or staying on his feet.
He will show commitment and passion with the club and if he plays his fare share of games could be a crowd favourite like Chico. With all the ability Jordi Amat has he shows weakness in the air and often struggles to contain big strikers.
Jonathan De Guzman
After a very good first season, making 37 appearances scoring 8 goals, Laudrup made it his top priority to bring back central midfielder Jonathan De Guzman (25), on loan from Spanish club Villarreal.
In his first season in premier league football De Guzman featured mostly down the middle. He sometimes played a more advanced role playing behind Michu and in other matches more defensively alongside Leon Britton.
Out of his 8 goals from midfield the pick of the bunch would be the free kick against Stoke City at the Liberty Stadium which won Swansea’s best goal of the season poll.
So, after a very successful first season for the Jacks, De Guzman was called up for the Holland squad in which he has now made 5 appearances. With his contract expiring at the end of the season Huw Jenkins has made a great business deal, knowing now that he will be able to pick de Guzman up on a permanent deal in January for a very small price.
De Guzman is one of the most skilled players in the squad. He offers great deliveries from dead ball situations and provides a constant threat with his vision. He consistently offers a cross field pass to switch the play when needed to open goal scoring chances for Swansea.
However,De Guzman could be seen as a lazy player as he doesn’t track back when required. Throughout last season’s campaign he received a fair share of criticism from the Swansea fans due to a lack of effort. He tends to fade in and out of the games. But, to be fair, he did make up for this by scoring 8 goals and helping Swansea win crucial away games such as Newcastle and Fulham.
The 2nd of July Swansea completed their fourth signing of the season as Laudrup brought in Real Betis play maker Alejandro Pozuelo.
The 21-year-old agreed a three year deal with the Welsh club yesterday for an undisclosed fee believed to be around £500k. Pozuelo was in south to start pre-season training with a series of fitness tests in the clubs new training facility. He becomes the seventh Spaniard to join the Swans and has complimented the style that the team play, noting how it suits him.
Pozuelo made 29 appearances for Real Betis and at only 21 years old he would have learnt a lot in Spain. This will surely benefit him in England. Again, if he gets a lot of game time, he could be a big hit with the fans.
Alejandro Pozuelo is an attacking midfielder who has great vision and a lot of pace. He dribbles in a similar way to Messi, in the way he drops the shoulder and accelerates past a player. He thrives on assists and he will love the style of football that Swansea play and the pace of the Premier League will suit him very well. He is a different kind of player to what Swansea currently possess and he will achieve great things with the football club. Watch out for him as he will make noises in England.