Ryan Giggs backs 'fantastic' Sanches to excite Prem; Clement hails squad
Paul Clement believes Swansea have a stronger squad now than the one which featured Gylfi Sigurdsson and Fernando Llorente, while Ryan Giggs has backed Renato Sanches to shine in the Premier League.
Deadline-day signings Renato Sanches and Wilfried Bony are set to make their Swansea debuts at home to Newcastle on Sunday after a busy summer of transfer activity at the Liberty Stadium.
Swansea signed seven players in the transfer window while 10 left the club, among them Icelandic playmaker Sigurdsson -- who was involved in 53 percent of their goals last season -- and 15-goal top scorer Llorente.
"I'm very happy with the way that the squad has shaped up,'' head coach Clement said.
"Clearly you are disappointed when you lose some key players, and in Sigurdsson, Llorente and [Jack] Cork three very good players left the club.
"I can't lie and say we haven't lost some good players. We have.
"But the ins that we got are very good and I am pleased with the size of the squad.
"We brought the numbers down and it's far more manageable. I would go for this squad now -- 100 perent.''
The £45 million departure of Sigurdsson to Everton and the loss of Llorente to Tottenham prompted many to predict that Swansea are heading for another relegation battle after last season's struggles.
But the shock loan capture of Bayern Munich midfielder Sanches and the return of former favourite Bony in a £12m deal from Manchester City has lifted everyone in and around Swansea.
"We had good players who wanted another challenge to go and play elsewhere,'' Clement said.
"But it's better to have players who are motivated and really want to play for this club.
"Not only did we bring in good quality players, but we brought in players who are motivated and I believe we can become a better team.''
Clement says Sanches falls into that category following a difficult first season at Bayern after his €35m move from Benfica.
The 20-year-old was named best young player of the tournament when Portugal won Euro 2016.
But he made only 26 appearances last season and Bayern were keen for him to go out on loan and play regular football.
"I think there will have to be a certain amount of patience we show with him, given what's happened last season,'' Clement said.
"But he's going to be hungry to do really well, so that he can perform at a much higher level next season in European football.
"He's also going to want his place back in the Portuguese national team.
"He's lost his place and he's already played in a Euro final. So it must hurt that he's now playing under-21 football for Portugal.
"It's World Cup year in 2018, so that must be a massive motivation for him.''
Meanwhile, Ryan Giggs expects the "fantastic'' Sanches to be among the Premier League's most exciting players after tracking him during his time as Manchester United assistant manager.
"It didn't quite happen for him last year at Bayern,'' Giggs told Press Association Sport.
"That can happen; a young player moving country, different language, a big club and a lot of expectation.
"But he is a talent and the Premier League will suit him because he's an aggressive player.
"He can tackle, he can get forward and he's going to a club that play football the right way, so I think he'll be a success.''
Giggs revealed Sanches came on the radar at Old Trafford when he was still a teenager at Benfica and Louis van Gaal was United manager.
"I remember watching him three years ago in Louis' first season and instantly liking him,'' Giggs said.
"I thought then that he would suit Premier League football.
"Paul Clement's ties to Bayern and his friendship with Carlo Ancelotti has obviously got a lot to do with him coming to Swansea.
"But you've got to capitalise on stuff like that.
"He's a fantastic player and I think he will be one of the most exciting players in the league.''