Where are they now? Tommy Williams
Ever wondered what former Swans stars have been up to since hanging up their boots?
Well you are in the right place.
As part of a regular feature, we take a look at what some ex-Swansea City favourites have done since leaving SA1.
This week we look at left-back Tommy Williams, who has played for a host of clubs since his time as a Swan came to an end - and is now contemplating whether to keep on playing or concentrate on footgolf.
Tommy Williams was part of the Swansea City side who came close to gaining promotion from League One to the Championship in 2006 and then again in 2007.
Having signed for the Swans in January 2006, the versatile player made 18 appearances in the second half of the season and came on as a substitute in the 2-0 victory at Brentford in the League One play-off semi-final, second leg.
Having lost the League One play-off final which followed to Barnsley, the Swans finished seventh in the third tier 12 months later, missing out on a place in the play-offs by just three points.
Williams featured in 27 of the club’s 46 league games that campaign prior to a move to Wycombe Wanderers.
“It was a special time for me at Swansea City,” reflects Williams, who made a total of 52 appearances for the Swans.
“On the pitch, it was a very special team to be part of and the club had some real forward momentum. It didn’t surprise me a number of years later when they got to the Premier League.
“Off the pitch, it was a memorable time for me too. My first son was born in Swansea and I was also called up to the national team (Cyprus) while I was there.”
Williams’ Swans debut came in a 3-1 victory at the Liberty Stadium on January 10, 2006, a night he will never forget.
“I had only signed for Swansea a few days earlier and I went straight into the team for the match against MK Dons,” remembers Williams. “My wife was around eight months pregnant at the time so she didn’t come down to Swansea until the night of the match itself, along with my family.
“Things couldn’t have gone any better in that game. We won 3-1. I got two assists as Leon Knight, who was making his debut alongside me, scored a hat-trick.”
Eight months on from his debut, Williams made his first international appearance as he started for Cyprus in their 2-0 defeat to Romania in Farul.
“The Cypriot Football Association had been monitoring my situation for a little while as they knew I qualified to play for them through my mother,” explains Williams.
“It was difficult to play for Cyprus because their fixtures conflicted with our matches in League One.
“But it was a very proud moment for me to win a cap for them. It’s something I’ll always look back on fondly.”
Since leaving Swansea in the summer of 2007, Williams has played for a host of clubs across the Football League including Peterborough United, Queens Park Rangers, Preston North End, Bristol City, Colchester United, Walsall and Notts County.
In 2016, he moved to the United States to sign for United Soccer League side Arizona United (now Phoenix Rising).
“I played with Marc Bircham at Queens Park Rangers, who was also my coach there,” says Williams.
“A few years ago, he went out to the States to work at Chicago Fire and then Arizona United as a coach.
“He invited me out there and asked me if I fancied signing for Arizona.
“It was a great experience, but sadly one that was cut short when I dislocated my knee cap. I’m still coming to the end of my recovery as I talk to you.”
Such was the extent of Williams’ injury that he last played a competitive match around 16 months ago.
Over the summer, he trained in Cyprus as his return to full fitness drew closer, and he is now weighing up his options with regards to his future.
“It has been very difficult being out for such a long time,” admits Williams.
“I’m unsure whether I will sign for another club or not. I get phone calls now and again asking how I’m doing and what my situation is, but my main focus is on getting 100 per cent fit.
“If I do get back into playing – and I still think I have something to offer – I’m open-minded as to what league I play in.”
Something that has kept Williams entertained on his road to recovery has been a spot of footgolf.
And not surprisingly, perhaps, he is pretty good.
“After about six months of recovering from injury, I was still unable to run or jump, but I was able to strike a ball, so that’s when I started playing,” he says through a smile.
“I played a tournament out in America a number of months back and I’ve been asked to play on the European World Tour next year, so we’ll see.”
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