Swansea City now have a wealth of talent in wide areas, Jefferson Montero included, but perhaps it is time to concede that the Ecuadorian just doesn’t fit the Swansea ethos.
Signed for Swansea in 2014 for a fee reported to be around £4 million, the winger has had spells at the club where he has looked like a world-beater, and was even a one-time target of Bayern Munich.
There have also been days for Montero that weren’t so bright. It took two months after Francesco Guidolin’s appointment for the winger to earn his first playing time under the Italian.
Easily found out
It’s difficult to be an offensive threat in an offense that has been as stagnant as Swansea’s this season. When there aren’t multiple threats going forward, it’s easy for teams to defend, which has really gone against Montero.
The winger excels at beating his man, but not a lot else. He’s one of the best one-on-one players in the world going forward, but struggles to get those opportunities in this Swansea side.
With a defensive full-back like Neil Taylor on the same flank as Montero, it’s easy for the opposition to double up on the winger, rendering his game largely useless.
It seems that if the opposition read the scouting report, defending Montero comes easily, despite his outrageous talent. If he were surrounded with better offensive players however, it could be a different story.
It’s no coincidence that Montero has only shined for weeks at a time, because after a few games teams figure him out. Each Premier League side has a dedicated video analysis team to pick up on this sort of stuff, he isn’t going to slip through the cracks.
Who could replace Montero?
With gaping holes in centre-midfield, right-back and up front, it’s unlikely that Swansea will spend big on a winger to replace Montero.
Although there have been previous links to Welsh forward Hal Robson-Kanu, who is out of contract, and Junior Hoilett has been once again linked with a move to South Wales.
There are players already at the club who are ready to make the step-up though. Modou Barrow has become a key figure this season, despite starting the campaign in the youth setup, and few would complain if he was given a larger role at the club.
Wayne Routledge will definitely be in the mix, after another solid season, while youngster Kenji Gorre should see more game time next season.
Could Montero stay and be a success?
His time at Swansea has hardly been a failure, and the winger has endeared himself to the Swansea faithful, there’s every chance he could shine at the club for a prolonged period.
Montero however is a luxury player, and would be better suited as a squad player for a team that is challenging for league titles.
Swansea are close to completing a takeover though, and there’s a chance that Jason Levien and co. could spend big on the side this summer.
If they do so, and surround Montero with several top quality offensive threats, then he absolutely can be a star in this Swansea side.
However, unless the slim chance of Swansea becoming a huge force in this transfer market comes true, Montero should see the door.