Swansea City Head Coach Paul Clement told the media of his excitement of returning to former employers Chelsea on Saturday as he aims to orchestrate another big away win.
Clement, who also worked at Chelsea in his early coaching days, spent four seasons as a first team coach at Stamford Bridge from 2007-2011, winning the Premier League and FA Cup in his first season as Carlo Ancelotti’s assistant.
“I am really looking forward to going back in a coaching capacity,” Clement told the press, “I still keep in touch with some of the people who work at the club.”
Chelsea fan and Swansea University student Noah believes that Chelsea fans will show just as much affection towards Clement as he still holds for Chelsea.
“Although he will be an opponent when the two clubs meet, I think the fans will be quite relaxed with him,” he predicted, due to his success both at Chelsea and in Europe with Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich.
Despite Clement’s excitement, he reiterated his desire to win on Saturday. “Whoever we’re playing this weekend it’s a game that I want to win. We’re all very excited by this challenge and we’re not daunted by it either.”
Claude Makelele followed Clement to South Wales and he too is looking forward to a return to West London. “They gave me a lot for my career. But I do my job (at Swansea). I think the fans at Chelsea understand that too,” he told Swans TV.
Noah hailed the Frenchman and believes that he will receive a good reception from the fans due to his contribution to the successful Chelsea team that “allowed former players like Lampard, Robben and Drogba to really venture forward and allow Chelsea be the threat that they were.
“Makelele must take some credit (for Swansea’s upturn in form). With his experience, he would have definitely had some words of wisdom for the Swansea players,” he added.
The final former Blues player to return to the club this weekend is current Swans captain Jack Cork, who left the club he had been at since the age of nine for Southampton having not made a single appearance for the first team.
“It would have been nice to have given him the chance at least to show how good he is but he wasn’t given that chance,” said Noah, with English players at Chelsea rare nowadays.
Promising performances away at Liverpool and Manchester City have impressed many and show significant signs of progress since Clement’s arrival. “Probably no one is expecting us to win, that takes the pressure off to a certain degree, but we put our own pressure on us,” he insisted. A win orchestrated by three of the Swans’ most influential members at their old club would do the South Wales side’s survival bid wonders.