Tag: Swansea City

Michael Dye: The Death Of A Football Supporter And Tabloid Values

There will be a sombre mood in the air at The Cardiff City Stadium this afternoon, as the team takes to the field for its home league match against Doncaster Rovers. The death of Cardiff City supporter Michael Dye shortly before the start of Tuesday night’s European Championship qualifier between England and Wales cast am obvious pall over the subsequent discussion of that match and several articles written in the press about Mr Dye since then have reeked of a sadly all too familiar insensitivity on the part of a section of the British press. This behaviour has led to the The Sun being banned from attending this afternoon’s match at The Cardiff City Stadium – the other two newspapers concerned, The Daily Mail and The Daily Star, are understood not to have been attending anyway – and to a flurry of complaints to the Press Complaints Commission from supporters of both Cardiff City and Swansea City. In the immediate aftermath of Mr Dye’s death, facts on what had actually happened were hard to come by and a hastily set up Facebook tribute descended fairly rapidly into a series of small arguments, some of which represented what we could not unreasonably call the very worst of human nature. At first, it was assumed that Mr Dye’s death had come about as the result of fighting between England and Wales...

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Match Of The Week: Manchester City 4-0 Swansea City

In May of 1983, three clubs were relegated from the First Division. Brighton & Hove Albion were one, and the other two were Swansea City and Manchester City. Manchester City returned to the top flight a couple of seasons later but, for Swansea City, the intervening three decades have brought hardship and a couple of seasons during which even the league status of the club was thrown into doubt. This evening, though, they’re back, following an eight year period that saw them leap three divisions. Much has changed in that time. Maine Road and The Vetch Field are no more, replaced by The City of Manchester Stadium and The Liberty Stadium. The First Division is no longer the show-piece event of English football – it’s all about the Premier League. A lot has changed since 1983. Manchester City start this season with the burden of expectation that the lavish riches of Abu Dhabi brings with it higher than ever. An FA Cup win in May broke a curse of sorts, their first major trophy since 1976, but now the task is an even stiffer one, to bring the English championship to the sky blue half of Manchester for the first time since 1968. There has been plenty of denial of the fact during the pre-season white noise, but there can be little question that a serious championship challenge will...

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The Twohundredpercent Pre-Season Previews: Swansea City

Certain sections of the media have long had the mildly irritating habit of treating 1992 and the beginning of the Premier League as football’s Year Zero. In this world, “the history of football” is substituted for “the history of the Premier League”, as if nothing that happened prior to the twenty biggest clubs cutting themselves free in the pursuit of all the television money – to which we can only say, mission accomplished – and anything that happened prior to then is treated as at best an relevance. So it was that when Swansea City beat Reading in the Championship play-off final at Wembley in May, they became “the first Welsh club to reach the Premier League”, which, whilst it was true on the one hand, didn’t take into account anything that had happened prior to the great land grab of 1992. Swansea’s previous top division adventure had only lasted for two seasons during the early 1980s, but it left a lasting mark on the club, not least of which was the belief that it this status be managed again. How important might that have been during the dark days that have come between then and now? It’s worth bearing in mind because it it is only eight years since the Swans completed a then unlikely looking end of season double to preserve their place in the Football League. The notion of...

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Seasons Of Mist & Mellow Fruitfulness: Swansea City & The Premier League

The fixtures are out and the pre-season friendlies have started. This is a time of year for unbridled optimism and Swansea City supporter David James can look forward to his team’s first appearance in the top division of the game since 1983. They’ve had quite a journey to get back there, though. A team that isn’t from England in the English Premier League? Whats that, I hear you say? For those readers from around the world who may not be versed in UK geography, there will be a very special team playing in the English Premier League next season, for the first time since its inception in 1992. Already, the press have been lapping this angle of the Swansea story up and we can expect a lot more of it during the nine months after we kick off next month. Editors, website owners and television editors have probably already got their “Singing In The Valleys” headlines written. We tend to view these cliches for what they are, and such mild annoyance is a minor irritant in comparison with opportunity of a shot at the big time. Supporting Swansea City hasn’t always easy over the years. Our rivalry with Cardiff City speaks for itself, but the Swans even have considerable competition within our own city. Rugby continues to rule the roost in much of our part of the world, and...

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The Twohundredpercent Play-Off Jamboree: Reading 2-4 Swansea City

Swansea City stand firm as an example of how much the fortunes of a football club can change in the space of just a decade. They had been promoted from Division Three (now League Two) at the end of the 1999/2000 season, but tumbled straight back down into it a year later, and this was only the beginning of their problems. The following season, they finished fifth from bottom of the entire Football League and at the end of the 2002/03 season, they managed to haul themselves out of the relegation places with wins in their final two league matches against Rochdale and Hull City. Eight years on from that great escape, they have managed one in the opposite direction. Swansea City will start next season as the first Welsh club to play in the Premier League and the first Welsh club to play in the top division of the English league system since they were relegated from it in 1983. Reading have been here before, though their supporters may choose to forget about their previous appearance in the final of the play-offs for a place in the Premier League. In 1995, they led by two goals against Bolton Wanderers before losing 4-3 in extra-time, and lost in the semi-finals two years ago and in 2003. They made it into the Premier League as champions in 2006 and lasted...

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