FAN FOCUS: Jamie Thomas

13th November 2016

Name: Jamie Thomas
Age: 20
From: Born and raised in Clydach, living in Llanelli.

How long have you been supporting the Swans?
Since 2002-03. I was only six at the time so I don't remember much. That may be a good thing. It wasn't exactly a season to remember apart from that game against Hull, which was special.
I've followed the club from the bottom of League Two all the way to the Europa League.
It's been a journey nobody could have imagined. To have the Liberty and Premier League football is a dream come true.

What was the first Swans game you attended?
The first round of the League Cup against Wolves. I think they were in the Championship at the time and we lost 3-2. I don't remember much from the game - it was the first time I'd stepped inside a stadium and it was something to behold. I remember the smells, the sounds and the sights. It was ugly and beaten up but it was ours. I remember the pushing and shoving after a few meaty tackles and the crowd roaring the boys on. It's where my love for this club started.

Why did you start supporting the Swans?
My friend from school was always talking about the Swans - how he loved going to games with his dad. One day he asked if I would like to tag along and I was hooked. I can remember spending most of my time at games staring at our fans bellowing chants from the North Bank and the away fans giving/taking banter.

What is your most memorable Swans moment?
There are so many. The win over Hull, winning League One, the Championship play-off games against Forest and Reading, Premier League football. Winning the Capital One Cup has to be our biggest achievement. I am devastated I missed most of the group stages in Europe - I caught the end of games after college. We had a late night every week in college - it had to be the Thursday!

What is the best game you've seen at the Vetch/Liberty?
The play-off game against Forest. I still watch the goals. We'd come back from holding out for a 0-0 draw at their place with ten men virtually all game. Spirits were high and the stadium was bouncing. We wanted this more than anyone could imagine. When Pratley scored, we were going to Wembley. The party on the pitch was brilliant.

What is the best goal you've seen at the Vetch/Liberty?
The James Thomas chip v Hull. I know there are so many goals from the likes of Trundle, Pratley and Bodde but the importance of that goal made it more special. James Thomas is my hero and always will be.

Can you tell us about the greatest sacrifice you have made to watch the Swans?
I have missed many family occasions through football, not to the amusement of certain family members!

Describe to us your typical pre-match ritual?
I am usually spending time with my girlfriend in Chesterfield for away games, so it is wake up, get the bacon and egg down and then get on the train. I meet friends for a pint, pick up a programme and get into the stand, then it's all about taking in the atmosphere. For home games, I go to Frankie & Benny's before the game. Other than that, it's pretty similar to away games - mates, food, drink and football. What more do you need?

Who is your favourite Swans player of all time, and why?
Leon Britton. He's been there from the start and he is still one of our best midfielders. When he left for Sheffield United, I was gutted. It was one of the best decisions Rodgers made to bring him back. Whenever he is in our midfield it just seems to be a lot calmer, more organised. If anyone deserves to be adopted as a Jack, it is Leon.

Who is your favourite current player, and why?
Aside from Leon, I would go for Gylfi. When he signed on loan he was a different breed for us and he's never really looked back from there. He went to Spurs, but fortunately we managed to get him back on a permanent deal. If Gylfi reads this - don't leave...ever!

What is your favourite Swans kit from over the years?
The green/black away kit from the League One title campaign. Legends like Monk, Britton, Tate, Bodde, Allen, Robinson, Ash and O'Leary wore it.

If you could sign one player for the club, who would it be?
Can we have Lee Trundle back? No, okay then. If I was dreaming it would be Bony. It hasn't really worked out for him at Manchester City and I am disappointed for him because he was such a servant to our club. I would love him back because you just know it wouldn't take him long to start slamming the goals in. But if I was being sensible, I'd say we are pretty thin on the ground when it comes to wingers. I wouldn't mind signing Patrick Hermann from Monchengladbach. I like watching the Bundesliga and he is a great player.

What has been your most disappointing moment watching the club?
This is probably the hardest question as it seems like the Swans have been on the up since I started following them. The only real disappointment was against Doncaster in 2009-10, when we missed out on the play-offs. It was an awful atmosphere leaving that game, but Rodgers came in and it all clicked.

What makes Swansea City special to you?
Above all, it's the way the club has been run, the major part the fans have taken in getting us here and the way the board at the time acknowledged that and respected us.
We have worked together to get the club here with a sense of community and togetherness that is very rare in football these days.
The climb from the depths of the lower leagues was astonishing.
I honestly can't thank my friend enough for getting me down the Vetch to kick this story off. This club means so much to me.
I hope Bob Bradley and the boys can kick on from the poor run and I wish Francesco Guidolin the best in the future. He took us on when most managers turned us down and kept us up. I respect him for that.