Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel salutes Swansea City
PETER Schmeichel has saluted Swansea City’s rise to Premier League prominence and tipped Michael Laudrup to turn them into an established top-flight club.
Schmeichel, one of the Premier League’s biggest ever stars, was at Swansea’s training ground yesterday to catch up with old pal Laudrup.
The Manchester United legend reckons Swansea pulled off a “scoop” when they appointed Laudrup as Brendan Rodgers’s successor in the summer.
He believes his fellow Dane will inspire Swansea’s players to improve — and steer the club well clear of relegation.
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“I look at a club like Swansea and think it is not a bad thing to have the mentality that survival is great,” Schmeichel told the Evening Post.
“The more times you can survive, the better a Premier League club you will be, and then you can start thinking about looking up. I said to Michael that if he can keep Swansea in the Premier League for another year then he will have been very successful.
“But from what I have seen already, I’m convinced that Swansea are one of the clubs who should not be thinking about getting relegated.
“Having said that, you have to play the way you play in every game and be as strong as Swansea have been so far.
“If you can lose three games on the trot and then bounce back with a draw and a win, like Swansea have done, that shows strength.
“The beginning of the season was great, but it was also the worst thing that could happen because it raised expectations.
“Then you had the bad results, which are inevitable in this league, and the pressure started piling up.
“But because of the strength of the manager, the squad and the club, Swansea recovered from that.
“I am not saying they can lie back and relax and they will not get relegated, but definitely they have the manager and the squad to be safe.”
Schmeichel argues that Swansea are “ahead on points” having banked 11 from their first eight league games of the campaign.
“If you get a point a game in the Premier League it should be enough, and Swansea are ahead of that at the moment,” added Schmeichel, who won five English titles with United during a glittering career.
“I am not saying Swansea cannot do better than surviving, but that should always be your first target.
“The Premier League is so tough — you look at the points last season and how tight things are at the bottom.
“To survive in the Premier League is a really good result, especially after the progress Swansea have made in the last couple of years.
“They had to regroup very quickly after winning the play-off final and they did that really well.
“But any time you survive in the Premier League you become stronger, the infrastructure becomes stronger and everybody knows their jobs that little bit better.”