Clement axed in Swansea's 4th managerial firing in 2 years

ABS-CBN Sports on Dec 21, 2017 08:33 AM
Clement axed in Swansea's 4th managerial firing in 2 years
FILE - A Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017 file photo of Swansea City's manager Paul Clement as he looks at the stands before the English Premier League soccer match between Crystal Palace and Swansea City at Selhurst Park in London. Swansea fired Paul Clement Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2017, just before the manager completed a year in charge of the Premier League club. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland, File)

By Rob Harris, Associated Press

LONDON (AP) — Swansea fired its fourth manager in around two years on Wednesday, dismissing Paul Clement just before the manager completed a year in charge of the Premier League club.

Clement's departure comes with the South Wales team bottom of the standings, approaching the midway point of the season.

"To change the manager, especially at only the halfway point of the season, is the last thing we wanted to do as a club," club chairman Huw Jenkins said in a statement.

"But we felt we couldn't leave it any longer and needed to make a change to give us the best chance of an uplift and a turnaround in fortunes with the club bottom of the Premier League."

The club, which is owned by American investors Stephen Kaplan and Jason Levien, promised an update on Clement's successor by Thursday.

Swansea's spell of instability began with Garry Monk being dismissed in December 2015. Francesco Guidolin lasted less than 10 months in the dugout and the tenure of Bob Bradley — the Premier League's first American coach — was even shorter at 85 days.

Swansea was in the relegation zone when the 45-year-old Clement left his role as assistant coach at Bayern Munich to succeed Bradley in early January. The Englishman propelled the club to safety, finishing 15th in the 20-team standings.

But Swansea has lost all but two of its last 10 league games, with the latest being a 3-1 collapse at Everton on Monday. It left Swansea with 12 points from 18 games, four points from safety, and marked the end for Clement.

"What he achieved in the second half of last season to keep us in the top flight was a tremendous feat," Jenkins said.

"I have had an excellent working relationship with Paul and we are all, including the owners, surprised and disappointed it hasn't worked out this season."

It is another setback for Clement's hopes of carving out a career as a manager, lasting only eight months as Derby manager across 2015 and 2016. But he has prospered as an assistant to Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid, Bayern, Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain.

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