Giggs targeted to replace 'dead man walking' Guidolin

United legend favourite to be next Swansea boss

Published: 22nd September 2016 08:29 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd September 2016 08:29 AM   |  A+A-


LONDON: Francesco Guidolin is fighting to save his job as Swansea City manager after it emerged the club have targeted Ryan Giggs to replace him.

Huw Jenkins, the Swansea chairman, is understood to have considered approaching Giggs over the prospect of succeeding Guidolin before the move was blocked by the club's new American owners.

Jenkins was hoping to meet Giggs, the former Manchester United winger and assistant manager, ahead of the EFL Cup tie against Manchester City last night but postponed the plans after talks with majority shareholders Steve Kaplan and Jason Levien.

Kaplan and Levien, who completed their pounds 100?million takeover in July, are keen for stability and are reluctant to make a change so early in the season.

But Giggs has been a Jenkins target for some time and while it is unclear whether the 42-year-old would accept the post, Guidolin appears increasingly likely to be sacked before the next international break in October.

Sources have told The Daily Telegraph that the 60-year-old Italian is "a dead man walking" and it seems inevitable that Guidolin will become the first managerial casualty of the Premier League this season.

Guidolin's future is under serious doubt not only due to results - with Swansea winning only one of their opening five league games - but growing concerns over his methods and relationship with the squad.

He has already publicly clashed with long-serving players Neil Taylor and Ki Sung-yueng this season while there has been a sense of bewilderment behind the scenes over some of his preparations for games and training.

It is alleged that during Swansea's pre-season tour of the United States, Guidolin missed morning sessions to watch the Tour de France on television.

Senior players and coaching staff are also understood to have expressed concerns about the manager ever since he was appointed on a permanent basis at the end of last season, following his arrival as interim in January after the dismissal of Garry Monk.

Swansea endured a frustrating transfer window, missing out on targets including Nacer Chadli - who joined West Bromwich Albion from Tottenham Hotspur for pounds 13?million - Hakim Ziyech, Joe Allen and Leonardo Ulloa.

Fernando Llorente, the 31-year-old Spain international, joined for around pounds 5?million from Sevilla but has been a disappointment so far, failing to score in six appearances.

Swansea's new owners have been alerted to the discontent by Jenkins but remain hopeful that Guidolin can mount a revival. However, Manchester City visit the Liberty Stadium again this weekend and then Swansea entertain Liverpool the following Saturday.

The Liverpool game is seen as crucial by Swansea's board, but a heavy defeat by Pep Guardiola's City this weekend could even force a decision before then. Swansea are currently one point above the relegation zone, with four points from five games.

Leon Britton, the Swansea captain, had called for Guidolin to be shown respect after the incidents of dissent involving Taylor and Ki.

Both players reacted badly to being substituted - with Taylor's removal coming in the first half of the 2-2 draw against Chelsea - in what appeared open signs of mutiny towards the manager.

Guidolin accused Ki of not having a good attitude after he was taken off in last Saturday's 1-0 defeat at Southampton.

But Britton said: "If you have an issue with anything we deal with it in the changing room.

"As much as there's frustration and emotion running high - when you're not performing well we have to remember we are professionals and we have to respect everyone involved in the football club and I hope that's the last we see of that."

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