Next Swansea City manager: Five contenders

Sports Mole looks at five of the early contenders to replace Michael Laudrup as manager of Swansea City.

The Swansea City board decided last night that the time was right to part company with Michael Laudrup.

The Dane guided the Swans to the League Cup in February, but recent negative results, coupled with reports regarding mismanagement, have resulted in the 49-year-old losing his job.

Even with the news still fresh, the rumourmill has already linked a number of names with the Liberty Stadium vacancy. Below, Sports Mole assesses five of the early candidates.

1. Garry Monk
The centre-back, who was appointed to the coaching staff (much to Laudrup's supposed annoyance) yesterday, is the man that has been put in interim charge. He took training today and if he impresses, he is likely to put himself in pole position. While he has no previous managerial experience, the 34-year-old had a hardened style during his playing days and if the speculation is true, a no-nonsense approach is what the Swansea squad has been lacking in recent weeks.

Swansea player Garry Monk in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Swansea City and Newcastle United at Liberty Stadium on March 2, 2013© Getty Images

2. Graeme Jones
Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins is believed to have discussed the manager's job on at least two previous occasions with Jones, who was assistant to Roberto Martinez during his stint with the Welsh outfit. Since then, Jones has followed Martinez to Wigan Athletic and Everton. It has been said that 43-year-old Jones is highly thought of around the corridors of the Liberty Stadium, largely because they feel that his playing philosophy is in keeping with recent bosses.

3. Dennis Bergkamp
Having had no previous management experience, employing former Arsenal striker Bergkamp would represent an element of risk. However, having recently been taken on to the coaching staff at Ajax, there are few better clubs in world football to begin that process. What's more, when it comes to the summer transfer market, a player with Bergkamp's standing in the game may find it slightly easier to attract players to the club than the majority of his fellow candidates

Dutch striker Dennis Bergkamp in action for Arsenal.© Getty Images

4. Alan Curtis
Having had three playing spells with Swansea, Curtis is well respected. He was part of Laudrup's coaching team and has been placed in temporary charge alongside Monk. It seems unlikely that Curtis will be given sole responsibility for first-team matters, with a dual role alongside Monk looking the most feasible solution. Of course, a lot will depend upon the results that the pair achieve in the near future, starting with rivals Cardiff City on Saturday evening.

5. Gianfranco Zola
In terms of playing style, the Italian fits the bill. The former Chelsea frontman likes his teams to get the ball down on the floor and play passing football - something that Swansea have done ever since the Martinez era. He is currently out of work following his departure from Watford, whom he almost guided to the Premier League last season.

Waford boss Gianfranco Zola during the match against Nottingham Forest on August 25, 2013© Getty Images

Former England manager Glenn Hoddle is interviewed for British televison ahead of the UEFA Champions League football match between Benfica and Chelsea at Estadio da Luz in Lisbon, on March 26, 2012
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