Chairman's column: Tottenham

17th March 2018

Read Swansea City chairman Huw Jenkins' programme notes for today's clash with Tottenham Hotspur.

Good afternoon and a warm welcome to everyone here at the Liberty Stadium for today’s Emirates FA Cup quarter-final against Tottenham Hotspur.

I’m sure our staff, players and supporters alike will enjoy a welcome break from the high-pressure Premier League games we have all become accustomed to on a weekly basis over the last few seasons.

It is still an important FA Cup tie, though, and one we will be looking to win.

I think this is a good time to give my opinion that perhaps it is time for the Football Association to consider a change to the current rules which prevent a player playing for two different clubs in the same season’s competition.

Andre Ayew and Andy King played for West Ham and Leicester respectively in an early round of the FA Cup before the January transfer window closed – and before their transfers to Swansea City.

Bearing in mind that both players were not playing regularly for their clubs at the time, a move away in search of first-team football was a deciding factor for both Andre and Andy.

So, with the Premier League competition allowing players to move freely and play for another club in the league that same season, to prevent a player doing the same in the FA Cup seems, in my opinion, to be something worth reviewing for the benefit of everyone involved – players, fans and the competition itself.

The current rules for the competition have been in place a long time, but with the transfer windows now in place and part of the football structure only allowing players to move at fixed periods within a season, it has partly stopped one of the main reasons why the one-player, one-club rule was introduced.

Stopping players playing football cannot be the right thing for anyone and maybe the time is right to consider some changes.

A warm welcome to all directors, staff, players and supporters who have travelled to South West Wales to support Spurs today.

Manager Mauricio Pochettino will be more focused than ever to progress in this season’s FA Cup following their recent defeat to Juventus in the Champions League return leg at Wembley.

With so many players having moved between the two clubs during the last few seasons, and with a semi-final place at Wembley awaiting today’s winner, I’m hoping the game will be fast and furious from start to finish – like a cup tie should be.

More importantly, I hope we can all enjoy a great game of football without the Premier League pressure that exists for all 20 clubs involved.

That desire to win will always be vital, but enjoying what we do will help us succeed far more.

Thanks, as always, for all your support.

Enjoy the game.