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Swansea take gamble on Graham firing them to survival

| 08.06.2011

Scoring enough goals will be pivotal if Swansea are to survive in the Premier League next season and they have taken a calculated gamble in signing Danny Graham from Watford.

The need for goals in the Premier League was highlighted this season as Birmingham, West Ham and Wigan were the three teams to score the fewest number of goals and of these two went down and Wigan only survived on the final day.

Swansea are 4/7 in the Premier League odds to make an immediate return to the Championship and it is unsurprising that they are favourites in this market given that they recently won the play-offs.

However, the signing of Graham could be seen as a statement of intent by the Welsh club that they are prepared to spend if necessary to boost their chances of survival.

Swansea have paid £3.5m to land Graham, which makes him easily their record signing and the hope will now be that he can reproduce his scoring exploits at Watford last season.

Graham scored 24 goals in the Championship and if he can net half of this amount for Swansea in the Premier League they will have a reasonable chance of staying up.

It is 5/4 that Swansea do avoid relegation, but they will require him to perform better in the Premier League than many of the most recent Championship top scorers, when they moved into the top flight the following season.

Sylvain Ebanks-Blake has failed to replicate his Championship scoring exploits for Wolves in the Premier League, while Marlon King and Nathan Ellington were others who failed to find the target with any regularity.

The only two goalscorers who did make the required step up were Andy Johnson and Luis Saha and unlike Graham both played in the Premier League with the same clubs with which they had scored goals in the Championship.



Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.