Swansea's struggles have nothing to do with Bob Bradley's nationality

BY Aaron West • December 14, 2016

Swansea are in trouble. They're bottom of the Premier League, they've conceded more goals than anyone — a whopping 31 — and they're in real danger of going down to the Championship. Rumors have been flying about the security of Bradley's position as Swans boss, but Bradley says his critics have wanted him out from the beginning because he's American.

"I don't spend any time thinking about it [my future]," the former USMNT manager said. "If some people want to criticize — there were some who had me out the door from the first day because of my accent.

"When you're a manager, it goes with the territory," said the Premier League's first ever American manager. "If you worry about that and spend time covering yourself in those ways, players will spit you out so fast, they'll see through it.

"If I am telling players 'you have to look adversity in the eye and you have to have some courage', I have to have it too."

Bradley and Swansea are absolutely going through adversity; they've only won one out of the seven matches he's been in charge for since taking over for Francesco Guidolin in October. But Guidolin wasn't fired because of his nationality (he's Italian) -- he was fired because he couldn't get results out of a team that just aren't good enough to get results.

Swansea already had a shaky defense, then they sold their best defender Ashley Williams in the summer. They failed to truly strengthen any other positions on the field aside from bringing in rarely-used striker Fernando Llorente and midfielder Leroy Fer, and it's shown on the pitch. They have the second-worst goal differential in the league, and the weak points in their squad have been exposed throughout the season.

Swansea Chairman Huw Jenkins is behind Bradley, though, and says he accepts responsibility for the team's struggles.

"I don't know where that story came from, but it's natural in football that everyone wants and needs results," Jenkins told TalkSPORT.

"But the last thing we need at this moment of time is a continual change in manager. We need stability first and foremost. Perhaps in the summer I could have made a better decision. From preseason onwards, I don't think things were right -- it was too flat.

"But we're with Bob now to try and turn that corner, and that is what we are working towards."

Bradley has reportedly been assured the team will be strengthened in January, but he's got five crucial matches ahead of him before the window opens. It's going to take a lot of courage and work on the training pitch to make sure they're not doomed before the new year.

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