Jack the Lad: Farewell to a memorable year

29th December 2017

Swans supporter and blogger Jack the Lad reflects on a difficult year - but points out that there have been some major highs along the way.

I think it would be fair to say that 2017 has not been the most memorable year for Swansea City and the club's supporters.

The Swans have spent pretty much all of the past 12 months in the lower reaches of the Premier League.

We started the year at the bottom of the table and as we approach the end of the year we once again find ourselves as the basement club.

However, there have been some memorable moments to look back on with pride. Not least the fact that we secured a seventh straight season in the top flight – six more than post pundits predicted for us!

Here are some of my favourite moments from the past 12 months.

Despite being rooted to the bottom of the table as Big Ben rang in 2017, the Swans’ year kicked off in spectacular style with a 2-1 win over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

As well as bringing three priceless points, the match produced one of the most popular strikes of the season as long-serving defender Angel Rangel secured the victory with a goal two minutes from time.

Later that month came one of the most memorable wins I have experienced as a Swans fan.

Few experts gave the bottom-of-the-table Swans any chance as they travelled to Anfield, a ground where they had never won in the league, to play a side who had not lost there in over a year.

So, when the visitors found themselves 2-0 up in the second half, even the most optimistic Swans fans were squinting at the Anfield scoreboard to make sure it was correct.

The home side pulled two goals back to level the game, but a Gylfi Sigurdsson winner sealed an historic victory for the visitors.

Sigurdsson produced another magic moment for the Swans during the five-match unbeaten run at the end of the season to seal the club's Premier League survival.

His brilliant free-kick at Old Trafford helped secure a vital 1-1 draw against Manchester United, which was followed up with consecutive wins against Everton, Sunderland and West Brom to earn the Swans a 15th-place finish in the table.

The Swans’ Premier League survival wasn't the only reason to celebrate at the end of 2016-17 season.

The club's under-23 side sealed a Premier League Two and Premier League Cup double when they beat Reading 2-0 in the final at the Liberty Stadium in May.

The team also enjoyed good runs in the Premier League International Cup and the Checkatrade Trophy.

The under-23s have also produced some of the rare Swans highlights from the first half of the 2017-18 season, the latest being a 3-1 win at Premier League Two leaders Liverpool.

The youngsters have also beaten Chelsea 3-1 up in London this season, thanks to a hat-trick from Oli McBurnie, and Arsenal 3-1 at Landore.

These results and impressive draws against the likes of Manchester United and Spurs suggest that while the past year may have been difficult for the club, the future is looking bright.

Hopefully, the Swans can at least sign off from 2017 with a win at Watford on Saturday, which could lift us off the bottom of the table as we enter the new year.

And what better way to start a bright, new optimistic year, than going all out for an historic first league win against Spurs at the Liberty Stadium next Tuesday night?

Happy New Year and come on you Swans!