Swansea vs Tottenham: Gylfi Sigurdsson gives Garry Monk a surprise

Icelandic midfielder left Spurs in the summer to return to Swansea where he has quickly re-found his feet

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The Independent Football

Swansea manager Garry Monk admits he never expected to be given the chance to bring Gylfi Sigurdsson back to the Liberty Stadium.

The Iceland international will be up against his old employers this  afternoon, determined to take out the frustrations of two stop-start years at White Hart Lane.

Monk said: “I was surprised he was available in the summer, but when I spoke to him he made it clear he wanted to come here. I already knew about his quality from when he was on loan here, and we have just been getting him to add little extras to his game. He works incredibly hard, he always stays behind after training to do more work and he has been great to have among the squad. The move could hardly have worked out better for him or us.”

Sigurdsson prefers to play in the No 10 role but started just six games for Spurs in that position. In the end, he was used as a makeweight in the deal which saw goalkeeper Michel Vorm and full-back Ben Davies move to Tottenham.

 

His form since has led many to question why Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino allowed the  25-year-old to leave; Sigurdsson has eight assists and two goals to his name already this season.

Monk said: “I had a decision to make in terms of allowing Ben and Michel Vorm to leave but I knew I needed that attacking option and he was right at the top of my list. I made it clear to the chairman that I wanted Gylfi here. He is not a player who thinks this is a step down, he was hungry and that was what made up my mind.”

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Sigurdsson returned to Swansea last summer

Monk believes his performances have silenced any doubters and is confident Sigurdsson will again get the chance to strut his stuff for one of the Premier League’s big superpowers.

“Gylfi can go as high as he wants. If he keeps working hard and performing well he may get another chance to go to a bigger club. But my aim is for him to do well at Swansea and I think he knows he needs to settle here for a few years.”

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Swansea manager Garry Monk

Monk will be without goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski for the visit of the north Londoners, with Gerhard Tremmel set to deputise for the Pole and make his first Premier League appearance of the season.

While Sigurdsson is certain to play a key role this afternoon, Vorm is  almost certain to be sitting on the Tottenham bench. France international goalkeeper Hugo Lloris will start for Spurs but Vorm insists he has no problem with that and knew exactly what he was letting himself in for when he moved to White Hart Lane.

He said: “I came here with my eyes open. At the moment Hugo is performing very well and I accept that. But I saw the challenge at  Tottenham and I went for it – that’s why I am here.

“You never can tell what could happen in the next few months or years. I work hard and get myself sharp for the games just in case, so when my chance comes along I can take it. I train well and I think if you ask my coaches and Hugo they would say I am a good signing.”

Probable line-ups:

Swansea (probable team, 4-2-3-1): Tremmel; Rangel,  Fernandez, Williams, Taylor; Ki, Britton; Routledge,  Sigurdsson, Montero; Bony.

Tottenham (probable team, 4-2-3-1): Lloris; Walker, Fazio, Vertonghen, Davies; Mason, Bentaleb; Lamela, Eriksen, Kane; Soldado.

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