Leon Britton may leave Swansea for regular football - Sam Ricketts

Midfielder Leon Britton has played for Swansea in all top four divisions
Midfielder Leon Britton has played for Swansea in all top four divisions

Leon Britton may have to leave Swansea if he wants to play football regularly, says former team-mate Sam Ricketts.

The midfielder, 32, has not travelled on the Premier League club's pre-season tour to Germany after it emerged that he would not get a lot of game time.

He has played for Swansea in all the top four divisions since 2002 but made only nine appearances last season.

"The way Swansea are playing at the minute he might not make the matchday squad too often," Ricketts said.

"Leon is one of those players who wants to play... that's why he's reached the level he's got to because he's a good professional and he wants to play matches."

Britton helped Swansea avoid relegation from the Football League and rise up the divisions to become a top-eight club in the Premier League.

He left for Sheffield United in 2010, but returned to Swansea just months later, playing almost 500 games for the club during his two spells.

Britton has been linked with a move to America,external-link although Swansea have not yet received any offers for him.

But with Jack Cork, Ki Sung Yueng and Jonjo Shelvey ahead of him in the midfield pecking order and Matt Grimes and Jay Fulton coming up through the ranks, Britton's prospects at the Liberty Stadium seem limited next season if he stays.

"I did my coaching badges with Leon in the summer with the Welsh FA," Wales and Swindon defender Ricketts - who played for Swansea from 2004 to 2006 - told BBC Radio Wales Sport.

"We spoke briefly about little bits of the future and things and it came up.

"The ultimate thing is he wants to play; he's got to the latter stages of his career, but he's still got many years left, especially the way he plays and in the position he plays.

"But I know he certainly wants to be playing football as opposed to just watching."