Garry Monk Swansea boss has 'exceeded expectations' - James

Garry Monk, Swansea City manager
Garry Monk captained Swansea before he became the club's manager in 2014

Former Swansea City winger Leighton James says Garry Monk has "exceeded expectations" and fully deserves a new deal.

BBC Wales Sport has learned that Swansea have started preliminary talks with Monk about a contract extension.

Monk, who has two years left on his current deal, has guided the Swans to a Premier League club record tally.

"The lad's done extremely well. He's exceeded expectations as manager in his first full season," James said.

"He's done incredibly well [with] a realistic chance of getting into Europe through league position.

"Nobody, not even my most optimistic self, would have even considered that at the start of the season.

"All credit should be given to Garry, his staff and the players because they've had a magnificent season."

Monk, 36, replaced Michael Laudrup on a caretaker basis in February 2014 before he was appointed permanent manager later that year.

He has impressed in his first full season in charge leading the Swans nine points above their previous best Premier League points total with two games to go.

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The Swans could qualify for next season's Europa League if they finish seventh in the Premier League and Arsenal beat Aston Villa in the FA Cup final on 30 May.

Monk was linked to fellow Premier League side West Ham United, a link which the former Southampton defender dismissed.

Ex-Wales international James would not be too concerned if Monk decided his future was eventually elsewhere and says the club have been shrewd in previous managerial appointments.

"They very seldom move a manager on without a replacement in mind or already in place," James told BBC Radio Wales Sport.

"It wouldn't bother me too much if Garry did decide to go and further his experience elsewhere.

"The club has a mentality that sets them as ready to replace anybody that does move on."