Michael Laudrup sacked: Manager pays price for 'apathy' at sliding Swansea City

The Dane had been under increasing pressure with the club winning just one of their last 10 Premier League matches

Swansea have “parted company” with manager Michael Laudrup.

VLess than a year after Michael Laudrup led Swansea City to a first-ever major trophy, his reign as manager came to an abrupt end when the former Denmark international was sacked amid reports of “apathy” among his playing squad.

With Swansea having recorded just one win in their last 10 Premier League matches to leave them only two points clear of the relegation zone, Laudrup was informed of his fate following a meeting with the Swansea chairman, Huw Jenkins. He becomes the sixth Premier League manager this season to leave his post.

Club captain and veteran defender Garry Monk will take charge for Saturday’s  derby against arch-rivals Cardiff City and “for the foreseeable future”, with first-team coach Alan Curtis set to assist him for the crucial match at the Liberty Stadium.

Despite reports of strained relations with Swansea’s board since a dispute over transfer targets in the summer, news of Laudrup’s departure still came as a shock, given that Jenkins had on Monday dismissed reports he was considering making a change. Yet a statement released by the club explained the reasoning behind the decision to dispense with the 49-year-old, who is now expected to agree a compensation package.

“It is a decision we have taken reluctantly, but it’s a decision made in the best interests of Swansea City Football Club and our supporters,” said Jenkins.

“It is the first time in nearly 10 years that the club has parted with a manager in this way, but we had to remove the constant uncertainty surrounding the club and Michael’s long-term future with us. I had a meeting with Michael today in a final attempt to support him and establish a way to improve the work of the back-room team to secure the results we need over the final 14 Premier League games.

“However, after thinking long and hard about the best way forward, I felt it was unlikely we would achieve a stable environment at the club to allow us to get back to basics and produce the performance levels that have served Swansea City so well over the last few years. Now we need to put that uncertainty behind us and move forward as a united football club on all fronts.”

Laudrup signed a new two-and-a-half-year contract within weeks of the 5-0 victory in the Capital One Cup final over Bradford City at Wembley in February last year – a deal that included a £10m release clause. However, a poor end to the season and disputes over prospective transfer targets in the summer began to erode some of the Dane’s support at boardroom level.

Michael Laudrup led Swansea to Capital One Cup glory last season (Getty) Michael Laudrup led Swansea to Capital One Cup glory last season (Getty)
Despite reaching the last 32 of the Europa League and knocking Manchester United out of the FA Cup, a record of just eight Premier League victories and 18 defeats in Laudrup’s last 35 games at the helm has turned Swansea into unexpected relegation candidates. A training ground clash between Monk – who joined the club in 2004 when they were still playing in the fourth tier but has made just one appearance so far this season – and Chico Flores two weeks ago led to police being called after the Spanish defender allegedly threatened his team-mate with a brick.

That incident proved to be the beginning of the end for Laudrup, who has been accused by some board members of “taking his eye off the ball”, having been linked with the managerial vacancy at Tottenham earlier this season. With increased pressure to stay in the Premier League this season given the extra revenue from the new television deal, it was felt that they would be better served by parting company with the man who has previously managed Brondby, Getafe, Spartak Moscow and Real Mallorca.  

Swansea’s odds for relegation were immediately cut from 8-1 to 11-2, although sources close to the club admitted there are no immediate plans to find a successor beyond Monk. The 34-year-old had been tipped to be given a coaching role under Laudrup but, with the club having a history of handing unproven managers an opportunity, it is likely that Monk and Curtis will be given time to guide Swansea away from trouble.   

Laudrup, a former Real Madrid, Barcelona and Denmark midfielder, was appointed to succeed Brendan Rodgers in the summer of 2012 and took them to a ninth-placed finish last season. He almost left following a falling-out over his agent Bayram Tutumlu in June, but was eventually allowed to make eight permanent signings and take three players on loan.

Of those only Ivory Coast striker Wilfried Bony has been a real success and Laudrup had faced increased pressure from supporters following a lacklustre defeat to fellow strugglers West Ham on Saturday. Now, though, with Cardiff waiting to take advantage on Saturday, Jenkins faces the biggest test of his tenure.

“I hope all our supporters can fully understand how difficult this period has been for us and I would urge everyone connected to the football club to get behind Garry Monk, the staff and players,” he said.

 

Suggested Topics
News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Sport
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
Sport
footballStriker has moved on loan for the remainder of the season
Sport
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
Arts and Entertainment
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
News
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Sport
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
News
i100
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Arts and Entertainment
Word master: Self holds up a copy of his novel ‘Umbrella’
booksUnlike 'talented mediocrity' George Orwell, you must approach this writer dictionary in hand
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering