Matt Grimes | This is a test of our credentials
Captain Matt Grimes reckons today’s clash with Leeds United at Elland Road will be a test of Swansea City’s Championship credentials for the season ahead.
The eagerly-anticipated top-of-the-table clash pits Steve Cooper and Marcelo Bielsa’s side against each other knowing the winner will head into the international break leading the way in the second tier.
Both teams have 13 points out of a possible 15, with Leeds having the edge on goal difference.
Bielsa’s men were among the pre-season favourites for promotion, while Swansea’s strong start has confounded the expectations of many outside SA1.
But Grimes knows taking on a Leeds side who narrowly missed out on automatic promotion last term, in their own back yard, will be a significant test.
One he feels will offer Swansea the best indicator yet of where they are at in their development under new boss Cooper.
“I’m really looking forward to it. Those are the types of games that you want to play in,” said the Swans skipper, who had a spell on loan with Leeds earlier in his career.
“I know it’s early in the season and anything can happen between now and the end, but it’s certainly a big challenge for us.
“Like them, we’ll be going there full of confidence, but it should be a really good footballing prospect.
“It will provide a really good test of our credentials. They are among the favourites to be promoted to the Premier League and just missed out last year.
“They are a top side with a great manager and a really good squad of players.
“Elland Road is a tough place for any team to go, so it’s going to be a really good gauge of where we’re currently at.”
Cooper has made clear the mentality he expects of his players, and has promised he will not be setting his side up simply to avoid defeat in any game.
It’s a mindset Grimes himself has echoed as the Swans head to Yorkshire.
“One thing is for certain, we’ll be going there to win. The head coach has instilled that mentality in us since he arrived at the club,” added Grimes.
“If you don’t think you can win then there is no point in going. That’s how we need to be approaching every game this season.”