Dean Saunders and Supporters' Trust criticise Swansea City transfer activity

Sam Clucas
Midfielder Sam Clucas, who has joined Stoke City, was one of four players to leave Swansea on deadline day

Former Wales striker Dean Saunders says he is worried about Swansea City's Championship prospects.

Federico Fernandez, Jordan Ayew, Jordi Amat and Sam Clucas all left on transfer deadline day, bringing the total number of departures to 12.

Swansea City Supporters' Trust says the hierarchy have left boss Graham Potter with "a wafer-thin playing squad".

"If you get rid of your best players you are in trouble, whatever division you are in," Saunders told BBC Wales.

"I have been in this situation myself... I've witnessed what happens when you get relegated.

"The Premier League clubs cherry-pick your best players... and that has happened.

"You end up going into the season not fully prepared and you saw what happened to Sunderland when that happened to them [a second successive relegation last season]."

Saunders, who started his playing career at Swansea and managed the likes of Wrexham and Wolverhampton Wanderers, says the Swans are especially vulnerable in defence.

They sold Alfie Mawson and Kyle Bartley earlier this summer and Federico Fernandez and Jordi Amat departed after deadline day, leaving Mike van der Hoorn as the Swans' sole senior centre-back.

"They are going in with one centre-half, they have lost a lot of talent," said Saunders, who won 75 caps for Wales.

"The situation with defenders is worrying. He's got to try and get a few players fit.

"As a manager, you need to get your defence right. Graham Potter will be worried, he is just going to be keeping his fingers crossed.

"They are going to have to grind out results and do the basics properly.

"Who at Swansea will do that? They've got one centre-back at the moment. Teams will be absolutely peppering them with free-kicks and set-pieces, that is real football."

'Wafer-thin squad'

The Swans signed five players during the transfer window but failed to land Brentford midfielder Ryan Woods, believed to be Potter's top target.

The dealings on deadline day in particular disappointed the Supporters' Trust, which owns a 21.1% stake in the Swans.

"We cannot let the events of transfer deadline day pass without comment," the Trust said.

"While we fully appreciate that there would be a need to cut costs following relegation from the Premier League, this should have been coupled with a proactive transfer policy to bring in players to replace those who have left.

"It is worth remembering of course that our relegation from the Premier League was a direct result of similarly poor transfer dealings over the last three years or so by the club's previous and current owners."

The statement added: "We had hoped that the restructuring of recruitment that the club announced meant that we would see a far more constructive and proactive transfer window this time around.

"Given the mass exodus of senior players, it is not unreasonable to expect that some of that money would have been reinvested into new additions to give Graham Potter the best chance of success.

"While the loan window remains open and we remain hopeful of new additions, the events of deadline day leave the club with a wafer-thin playing squad."

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