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Garry Monk sacked: Swansea dismiss manager - but Brendan Rodgers return to Swansea unlikely

Welsh club axe former player ‘with a heavy heart’ after poor run while ex-Liverpool manager considers £8m Qatar offer

Mark Ogden
Chief Football Correspondent
Wednesday 09 December 2015 16:45 GMT
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Garry Monk
Garry Monk (GETTY IMAGES)

Swansea are facing defeat in their attempts to lure Brendan Rodgers back to the Liberty Stadium as manager after ending Garry Monk’s 22 months in charge last night.

Monk, who was given the manager’s job on a permanent basis in May 2014 after a successful spell as interim manager following the sacking of Michael Laudrup three months earlier, was dismissed by chairman Huw Jenkins on the back of a run of one win in 11 league games that has left the club just one point above the Premier League relegation zone.

But despite taking the decision to dismiss Monk with a “heavy heart”, it is understood that Jenkins has yet to settle on the identity of a successor, with Rodgers, who left Swansea to take charge of Liverpool in June 2012, unwilling to commit to a return to South Wales.

Having lost his job at Anfield in October, Rodgers is considering a lucrative offer, worth in the region of £8m a year, to manage in the Qatar Stars League, but the Northern Irishman is nonetheless keeping an open mind on alternative opportunities in England and Europe.

David Moyes, out of work since being sacked by Real Sociedad in Spain last month, has been strongly linked with a move to Swansea, but the former Everton and Manchester United manager is not believed to fit the club’s profile due to the style of play his teams adopt.

Former Arsenal forward Dennis Bergkamp, currently working alongside Frank de Boer at Ajax, is being considered by Swansea, although the Dutchman’s long-standing refusal to fly is an issue that could damage his prospects due to the Welsh club’s travelling arrangements to and from fixtures.

Graeme Jones, Roberto Martinez’s assistant at Everton, is admired by Jenkins, who is keen to continue his policy of appointing emerging coaches, while Steve Round, Moyes’ assistant at Everton and United, and Rangers manager Mark Warburton are other names being assessed. Former Internazionale coach Walter Mazzarri has also been mentioned.

An appointment ahead of Saturday’s game against Manchester City at the Etihad is considered unlikely, however, with Swansea remaining open to the prospect of managers and coaches applying for the position.

But with Monk guiding Swansea to an eighth-place finish in the Premier League last season, with a club record 56 points, Jenkins conceded that the decision to part company with the 36-year-old was a difficult one.

“The decision has been made very reluctantly and with a heavy heart,” Jenkins said. “To find ourselves in our current situation from where we were in the first week of September, and considering the drop of performance levels and the run of results over the last three months, it has brought us to this unfortunate decision.

“Garry took on the job 22 months ago with the backing of everyone at the club. And when you take into account the excellent campaign we had last season when we broke all club records in the Premier League, nobody foresaw the position we would be in at this moment in time.

Riyad Mahrez's hat-trick for Leicester condemned Swansea to a 3-0 loss (Getty Images)

“Bearing that in mind and the current uncertainty around the club, we felt the situation needed clarity to move forward.

“It was not a decision we took lightly, especially given Garry’s history and standing within the club.

Rodgers is the early favourite to return to Swansea (Getty)

“And it goes without saying that we wish Garry all the very best for the future and thank him for his tremendous service, not only as a player over the last decade, but also as our manager.

“He will always have a warm welcome at this football club. We hope to appoint a replacement as soon as possible.”

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