Jack the Lad: Is the curse broken?

30th October 2018

On the eve of Halloween, loyal Swans fan and website columnist Jack the Lad wonders whether the curse of former players coming back to haunt his team might just be over.

I want a new rule introduced into the Football League.

Just like loan players can't take the field against their parent clubs, players should be banned from appearing against any of their previous employers.

If this rule is too difficult to administer across the whole league then it should be amended so that former Swans players should be banned from playing against us.

Or, at the very least, any goals scored by former players against the Swans should be disallowed instantly without exception!

It's just not fair how many times it happens!

I know it generally seems the case that former players will regularly come back to haunt their clubs by scoring against them, but where the Swans are concerned it’s getting beyond a joke.

Before the Blackburn game, half of the league goals scored against us had been netted by former, or current players.

Mike van der Hoorn’s unfortunate own goal against Ipswich supplemented strikes for Pablo Hernandez (Leeds United), Joe Allen (Stoke City), Gwion Edwards (Ipswich) and Tammy Abraham (Aston Villa).

And they weren't just any old goals either. All of them helped rival teams take points off the Swans.

I was absolutely dreading the Blackburn and Reading games with Danny Graham, who already had form having scored against us for Hull in 2013, and Mo Barrow in their squads.

When Blackburn were awarded their first-half penalty, I was amazed they didn’t ask Graham to take it.

Surely, after all, it would have been nailed on for him to score the way things have been going.

When he was substituted in the second half, I think the rousing ovation he was given by the Swans fans was as much out of sheer relief he’d been taken off without scoring against us as it was for all the goals he scored for us in the Premier League.

You can imagine my relief when I saw the absence of Mo Barrow's name from the Reading line-up last Saturday.

Rotherham have a couple of former Swans on their books in the shape of winger Alex Bray and striker Jamie Proctor.

The good news – for us at least – is that Bray has not featured all season after some injury troubles and seems unlikely to play this weekend.

However, Proctor – who had a brief spell in the Swans' development squad during our early days in the Premier League – could be involved, so fingers crossed there!

The phenomenon of former players scoring against the Swans is nothing new.

According to something I read in the media, when Abraham netted against us the other day, he became the 13th player within the last six-and-a-half years to come back and haunt the Swans.

Hang on! Tammy was the 13th. And since then two former players have failed to find the net against us. Okay, one of them didn't actually play, but he still didn't score.

Perhaps the ‘curse’ of the former Swans players has been broken, which seem quite appropriate at Halloween.

It's just as well. I somehow don't think the footballing powers that be would have gone with my idea.

Anyway, the way this current Swans team is starting to shape up under Graham Potter, they're good enough to overcome anything any of our former players may throw at us in future.

C'mon you Swans!