Swansea City's form has helped Michael Laudrup make tough decisions
MICHAEL Laudrup insists Swansea City's recent slump means making tough decisions about players' futures has become that much easier.
Swansea have not won in six matches, with their only victory since lifting the Capital One Cup coming against Newcastle in early March.
Laudrup admitted that his side may have lost their motivational edge in recent games after suggesting they overachieved in the first half of the campaign.
But the Dane revealed Swansea's performances over the last two months have helped clarify his summer recruitment plans.
"I think before the cup final we maybe overperformed a little bit," said Laudrup.
"There is a difference between wanting to win and needing to win. It may only be five or 10 per cent, but that's enough.
"Instead of winning you can draw and instead of drawing you can lose.
"It has been useful for me to see where we are and what we can improve. It makes it easier to make decisions.
"When you have won a cup and everything is good, you can make decisions based on emotion, more with the heart than with the brain, maybe things are a little clearer for me when I think about next season.
"I have quite a clear picture of what we need to do for next season."
Swansea collected 37 points from 27 games before their Wembley appearance in February, but have claimed just five from seven matches since.
Aside from that victory over Newcastle, they drew with Norwich and Southampton, while fixtures against West Brom, Arsenal, Spurs and Chelsea all ended in defeat.
And the situation may get even worse for Swansea as they now face second-place Manchester City and champions Manchester United in consecutive weekends.
In between is a tough trip to relegation-threatened Wigan before a final-day clash with Fulham.
"It is always disappointing when you go into a bad run. Did I think there would be some reaction after the cup? Definitely," said Laudrup.
"Reaching 40 points in that game with Newcastle was very important.
"We can analyse every game and look for reasons, but the fact is we have only won one game since.
"It is probably a combination of the club winning it's first major cup and the players feeling a bit tired.
"We have players that did not play so many games last season.
"It has been disappointing, but it is not up to me to make excuses, it is up to me to find explanations."
There is a danger that arguably Swansea's greatest ever season could end with a whimper.
And should they tumble down the Premier League table, every place dropped means less prize money.
"We know we have got some very difficult games left against the champions of last season and the champions of this season at Old Trafford," added Laudrup.
"But we're trying. We want to finish as well as we can in the league."