We must do it all over again - Swansea City's Leon Britton
LEON Britton admits Swansea City must prove themselves all over again this season as they bid to set up home in the Premier League.
Swansea made mugs of their numerous doubters last term by avoiding relegation with something to spare.
Written off in almost all quarters a year ago, Swansea turned heads up and down the land as their stylish football carried them all the way to an 11th-placed finish.
Their success did not go unnoticed, with Liverpool coming calling for boss Brendan Rodgers during the summer.
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Now Swansea face the challenge of doing it all again under new boss Michael Laudrup.
"Can we finish 11th again? We have to be optimistic so we hope so," Britton said.
"We proved our quality in this league, but now we have to do that again.
"We punched above our weight last season when you look at our wage bill compared to what they are paying at a lot of other clubs.
"We have to try to do the same again this season."
Britton was one of numerous Swansea stars who shone in 2011-12.
Having dropped down from West Ham to the basement division back in 2002, the midfielder was a central figure in Swansea's climb to the top — and then he excelled when they reached the summit.
But he insists Swansea's players do not feel like established top-flight stars just yet. "I think you have got to prove yourself season after season," Britton added.
"We went into the Premier League last year not knowing what it was going to be like, but all the boys showed that we are capable of performing at this level.
"We proved we can compete and, personally, I was pleased with my performances.
"But it's about doing it season after season if you want to prove you are a Premier League player."
Laudrup's squad enjoyed a day off yesterday after completing the long journey home from their pre-season trip to the United States.
Some of the American tourists are expected to feature in a friendly against Llanelli at Stebonheath tomorrow (2.30pm), although Swansea's frontline stars are not expected to play.
They are more likely to figure in the home friendlies against Blackpool on Tuesday and Bundesliga outfit Stuttgart a week today.
With only a fortnight to go until the new league season kicks off at Queens Park Rangers, Swansea's first team are yet to have a proper dress rehearsal.
Tickets for Swansea's opening home game of the season, against West Ham on August 25, go on sale this Monday.
For details of who can buy when, visit the club's official website.