Swansea University looking to emulate their capital city rivals
Cardiff Met took the Welsh Premier by storm last season, missing out on Europe in the final game. Now Swansea University are in the Welsh League and looking to follow the path trodden by The Archers.
Like many university sides, the club has struggled at the beginning and ends of the season as players often aren’t in the city where they study. Last season, however, a new commitment paid dividends as the side stormed to league success, seeing themselves promoted to Welsh League Division Three.
New coach Dafydd Evans installed a new attitude among the squad with more players putting in more effort to get back to Swansea in time for a full pre-season in late July and August. Perhaps that extra motivation was, in part, inspired by having got so close the year before – losing out to Ynysygerwn in a play-off.
The club was formed just six seasons ago and has had a quick rise through the Swansea leagues, even if they didn’t always achieve their potential with weaker squads at parts of the season. While the club is largely formed of current students, graduates who remain in the area and want to play are still a welcome part of the club – important when recruiting new players often doesn’t start until October when new undergraduates arrive on campus.
Coach Ben Corvett said the aim now is the follow in the footsteps of Cardiff Met, who Dafydd Evans was previously involved with. He said, “Now we’re in the Welsh Leagues we want to replicate the success of Cardiff Met FC. We’re looking to improve our recruitment, too, to ensure we can get of the new season with the best possible start.
“We’re excited to get going and show everyone what we’re about. We aren’t looking at any fixtures in particular, but obviously if we can get a home cup tie against one of the Division One sides, that’d be interesting.”
The coach gave us his three players to watch for the season ahead.
Joseph Palmer. This will be his fifth season with the club. Palmer is a stalwart in defence that holds the side together at the back and has a big influence off the pitch as well as on it. His experience will be key.
Harry Churchill. Previously Harry has played for Staines Town, the goalkeeper started last season as first choice, but the 19-year old custodian became a mainstay in the team in his first season at Swansea. Now into his second year, the talented shot stopper is first choice between the sticks.
Adam Orme. Having learnt his trade at the Swansea City Academy, Orme was at Goytre Utd before making the switch to the university side at the back end of last season. His calming influence helped the side to cross the line and achieve promotion last season, and he is set to skipper the side in 17/18.
(Featured Image: Swansea University FC)