PODCAST: LA Galaxy’s dealings and Shelvey’s move to Newcastle discussed

In the first MLSGB Podcast of 2016, Zack Walford talks to Jamie Ives and Louis East about LA Galaxy’s offseason transfer business so far, and what to expect in the coming weeks.

The team also discuss Jonjo Shelvey’s move to Newcastle and roundup the midweek Premier League fixtures.

Be sure to comment below with your thoughts or get in touch on Twitter: @MLSGB_

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2014/15 Premier League Season Review: Swansea City

Premier League Final Position: 8th

Review

The 2014/15 campaign was one to remember for Swansea fans as Garry Monk led the side to a record points tally and best ever Premier League finish in his first full season in charge. The Swans lost Wilfried Bony in January and were tipped for failure by many but defied the odds by ending the season with 14 more points than the previous campaign. They were consistent throughout and have lots to be positive about heading into the new season.

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Podcast Review

Best Moment

The opening day victory at Old Trafford set the tone for a fine campaign and saw the Swans beat Manchester United in Louis Van Gaal’s first Premier League game. They managed to complete a fine double over the Red Devils, winning 2-1 in both games.

Worst Moment

Losing 5-0 at home to Chelsea was a major disappointment for the Swans. The Blues were eventual champions but losing 5-0 on home soil is never acceptable and that was a result Swansea will not want to look back on when remembering the season.

Player of the Year

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Jonjo Shelvey – The midfielder ended the season with three goals and five assists. He pulls the strings from midfield and is an integral part of the squad in helping the defensive play transition into attacking promise.

Biggest Win

Swansea City 3-0 West Bromwich Albion (August 30, 2014)

Biggest Defeat

Swansea City 0-5 Chelsea (January 17, 2015)

What to improve for the 2015 season…

It was an excellent season but there is always room for improvement and Garry Monk will want to lead his side into a European place next season. Failing to win away at sides in and around them cost them this season and picking up wins in those games will help them to pick up even more points next time around.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Swansea vs Liverpool

Competition: Premier League – Swansea City vs Liverpool

Venue: The Liberty Stadium – Monday, March 16 – 20:00 GMT (16:00 ET)

Match Odds: Swansea 3/1 – Draw 12/5 – Liverpool 10/11

Match Preview

Swansea City battle Liverpool at the Liberty Stadium on Monday night, looking to leapfrog Stoke and be on course for their best ever finish in the Premier League whereas Liverpool head to Wales in search of three more points to carry on their rich vein of form as the race for the top four heats up.

Brendan Rodgers returns to the club with which he won promotion to the Premier League but he left after one season in the top flight to take over the hot seat at Anfield, where he has done excellently so far.

Garry Monk’s men have performed well this season and have already completed a double over Manchester United and also beat Arsenal at home. They have struggled since losing Wilfried Bony in January and the powerful Ivorian has left a huge hole in the striking position since leaving for Manchester City.

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Liverpool are in a great mood and are blitzing opponents away left right and centre. The Reds are coming off a disappointing 0-0 draw in the FA Cup to Blackburn Rovers, but that shouldn’t be a concern as Liverpool have scored in 11 of their last 13 games. Plus, Brendan Rodgers has not lost to Swansea City as Liverpool manager.

The reverse fixture saw Liverpool crush Swansea 4-1 at Anfield with five different goalscorers, including an own goal from former Liverpool man Jonjo Shelvey.

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There have been 24 goals between the sides in the last five meetings in all competitions so this should be another entertaining affair.

Team News

Swansea are almost at full strength with French forward Bafetimbi Gomis expected to be back after collapsing at White Hart Lane in the loss to Spurs last time out. Kyle Bartley will miss out through injury.

Liverpool could welcome back Martin Skrtel, while Joe Allen, who has recently struggled with hip and thigh issues, and skipper Steven Gerrard could also return to the squad. But Jordan Ibe continues to be sidelined with a knee ligament injury while Lucas Leiva and Jose Enrique will definitely miss out.

Key Points

Swansea City’s last five in the Premier League: D/L/W/W/D

Liverpool’s last five in the Premier League: D/W/W/W/W

Key stat: Since Swansea City’s promotion to the Premier League, Liverpool have failed to win at the Liberty Stadium (P3 D2 L1).

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Key Player: Simon Mignolet – The Liverpool goalkeeper has been in absolutely fantastic form since he was dropped and he has got back to his best between the sticks. He’ll need another solid performance away from home in this one.

Score Prediction

Swansea 1-3 Liverpool – Liverpool will cruise to victory ahead of next week’s game against Manchester United. Swansea City don’t have much to play for and will remain in 9th place by suffering their fourth loss at home in the Premier League this season.