Toshack: Players will learn from relegation

15th April 2019

Cameron Toshack insists Swansea City Under-23s’ relegation from Premier League 2 Division 1 will provide a good learning experience for his players going forward.

The young Swans’ two-year stay in the top flight of development football came to an end on Monday night as they were beaten 2-1 by Tottenham Hotspur at the Liberty Stadium.

Once again, the Swans were punished for not capitalising when in the ascendancy, with Troy Parrott’s double consigning them to Premier League 2 Division 2.

However, Toshack insists there were plenty of positives to take from his side’s performance.

“It’s always disappointing when a group of players get relegated. We feel for the boys,” the under-23s coach said.

“As we’ve found out, the league has got very good players and the quality and level of performance is very high. One or two might have got away from us but, overall, we’ve been pleased with the way we’ve competed in most games.

“It’s just about managing those key moments in games and making sure you get what you deserve. Again tonight, that’s not quite what happened and we were unfortunate.

“But, more than anything else, this is a very good learning experience for the players.

“Tonight, they really looked like a Swansea City team with the way they applied themselves – particularly in the second half. They dominated the ball, created a number of chances and passed the ball very well, which we were very pleased with.”

This season has seen many younger players step up from the under-18s – filling the shoes of several key members of last season’s squad that have since progressed to the first team – including Oli McBurnie, George Byers and Joe Rodon.

And Toshack is looking forward to seeing how the squad develops in the future – starting with their Premier League 2 fixture against Manchester City in two weeks’ time, before the Premier League Cup semi-final showdown with either Everton or Blackburn Rovers.

“It’s been a big step-up for most of these young players who have come up from the under-18s last season into an elite under-23s environment this year,” he added. “The benefit that they’ll have from a full season at this level will be untold.

“The players know what they need to improve and it’s our job to make sure we raise our consistency.

“It’s important now that we regroup, put a good plan in place for these players next year and perform at the high levels that Swansea City demands of their young players. 

“The season is not over. We still have a big game coming up against Manchester City, which is something that every young player should look forward to. We’re also in the semi-finals of the cup so, hopefully, the players will be able to deliver good performances in both matches.”