Swansea boss Carlos Carvalhal: 'My place is in the Premier League'

Former Sheffield Wednesday manager Carlos Carvalhal and ex-Middlesbrough boss Garry Monk
Carlos Carvalhal has locked horns in the Championship with ex-Swansea boss Garry Monk

New Swansea boss Carlos Carvalhal believes he and his staff have earned their chance to work in the Premier League.

The former Sheffield Wednesday manager was appointed on Thursday, four days after leaving Hillsborough.

Some have suggested the club is already planning for life in the Championship by appointing the Portuguese manager.

But the 52-year-old said: "I believe that me and my staff, our place is in the Premier League."

He added: "It may be my first time in the Premier League, but I was working at Sporting, with Besiktas and I played with Braga in the Europa League.

"I am a coach that if you saw my profile I will change the club, you will see that."

Carvalhal left Wednesday after two-and-a-half years by mutual consent on Christmas eve following a 2-1 home defeat by Middlesbrough.

At that point Wednesday were 15th in the Championship table, with Carvalhal having guided them to the play-offs in the past two seasons.

Although he has no previous experience of managing in the Premier League, Carvalhal is adamant he has nothing to prove after replacing Paul Clement in the Swansea job.

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"I am different because I started working in the third division," he said.

"I must work in the third division to jump to the second division, I promoted a team in the second division so I can go to the first division.

"When I go to the first division in Portugal I achieved qualification for the Uefa competitions, so I go to another team with expectations like Braga to play in the Uefa Cups also.

"After this I move to Sporting to a big club and after Sporting I move to another big club with Besiktas, so I'm a coach with a profile."

Destined for Swansea?

Swansea are the 17th club Carvalhal has taken charge of, in a managerial career that started at the small Portuguese side Sporting de Espinho in 1998.

He revealed he twice came close to landing the Liberty Stadium job, both before and during his stay at Hillsborough with Sheffield Wednesday.

Carvalhal was heavily linked with the job in 2016, before the Swans decided to extend Francesco Guidolin's contract after the Italian led them to survival.

But Carvalhal's association with Swansea goes back even further to a European Cup Winners' Cup tie in 1983.

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"I played in the Uefa competitions for Braga a long long time ago," he added.

"I remember Swansea played there and I remember that game because it wasn't that common at that moment that Braga play in the Uefa competitions.

"I remember that John Toshack was the coach in that moment... so Swansea stayed in my mind for a long, long time.

"I was a only a kid in the youth team of Braga, but I said to myself that one day probably my destiny will be Swansea, so I am very happy about that."

'Singing songs to me'

Carvalhal becomes the Swans' fifth manager in the last two years and arrives with the club bottom of the Premier League, five points adrift of safety.

Only three times in Premier League history has a club that has been bottom at Christmas managed to escape relegation.

But Carvalhal believes he can get the fans on his side as he has done in the past.

"I had a special moment win the fans at Besiktas, when I arrived in that moment nobody knew who I was," he said.

"After three months though they were singing songs to me, it was the same at Sheffield Wednesday.

"In this moment I believe the people here know a little more, but I prefer that the people don't know me and I show my work to the people and they start supporting me.

"I hope that we will be in a good position and we can change the things.

"It's a hard job, very hard work but we will fight to change the things."

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