Swansea City's turbulent week could be compounded by reports suggesting that Michael Laudrup will leave the club at the end of the season.
The Danish legend, 49, enjoyed a fruitful first season in South Wales last year, guiding the Swans to the Capital One Cup, and was subsequently linked with some of the biggest jobs in Europe, including lucrative jobs with Paris Saint-Germain and even Barcelona, who he spent five years with during his illustrious playing career.
But his second season in the Premier League hasn't quite gone as swimmingly, with the Swans struggling to balance their league and European commitments. With no win in the Premier League since their 3-0 demolition of Newcastle United on December 4, Laudrup now admits that the club are struggling after another defeat last weekend, this time to Tottenham Hotspur.
"It is obvious when you go some time without a win it hurts some players a bit," he said. "And the only way you can change that is by winning a game or two, and that's what we have to do. We have to bounce back and win the game or maybe two games that will give that group confidence.” said Laudrup, who has reportedly held talks with the Swansea hierarchy this week over his future.
Things went from bad to worse for Laudrup, as he watched two of his defenders – Chico Flores and Garry Monk – become embroiled in a training ground bust-up, with rumours suggesting there is now a rift between the Spanish and English players in the Swansea camp.
The news of his potential departure will almost certainly interest a number of clubs, particularly Tottenham, who were linked with a move for the former Real Mallorca and Getafe boss when they sacked Andre Villas-Boas in December, but nothing materialised, leaving Spurs to appoint Tim Sherwood on an 18-month contract.
Despite Sherwood enjoying a promising start to life as Spurs boss, there are no real assurances over his long-term future with the club, and the possible availability of Laudrup may interest chairman Daniel Levy in the summer.
But with Laudrup's fairly nomadic career – four managerial jobs since July 2007 – another failure with Swansea could really damage his reputation. Laudrup is known for his attractive, passing philosophy, but having struggled with Spartak Moscow and Real Mallorca, there could soon be question marks over his ability to manage consistently at the very top level of club football.
image: © Christopher Elkins