By David Parsons
Swansea City boss Michael Duff has told his sporting director Paul Watson to sack him if he takes his new club to the play-offs next season.
The only condition is that he gives him his job back a week later simply because he doesn’t want to jinx his side having twice fallen at the last hurdle at his previous clubs.
“I’ve had two play-off finals as a player and won, and two play-off campaigns as a manager and lost,” explained Duff.
“So, I said to Paul Watson that if we get to the play-offs, sack me and then give me my job back after the game.
“It was a case of glorious failure on both occasions. With Cheltenham, we were 2-0 up after the first leg and then lost 3-0 in the second.
“Then everything went against us last season when Barnsley lost to Sheffield Wednesday in the last minute of extra time playing with 10 men.”
🗣️ “I understand there is an expectation”
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That game was five weeks ago and for the second summer in a row the 45-year-old Northern Ireland international has switched clubs.
“I haven’t made a habit of switching clubs during my career. I’ve had as many clubs in the last 12 months as I had in the previous 27 years,” he added.
“I’m sure there will be people at Barnsley who hope I fall on my face here, but that doesn’t worry me. I don’t have any fear of being sacked, I just want to create better people and footballers.”
“If an offer comes in that we feel is right – then we’ll look at it” ⚽
— BBC Sport Wales (@BBCSportWales) June 30, 2023
His former boss at Burnley, Sean Dyche, remains a close confidante and sounding board for him and he is determined to add to Russell Martin’s possession-based style to create and successful side at the Swansea.Com Stadium.
“When I played at Burnley the fans let you know if there were too many passes. They wanted to see the ball going forward.,” said Duff.
“Eddie Howe came in a tried to play that kind of football and everyone got bored of it. Vincent Kompany came in and, guess what, he’s playing total football and they like it now because they are winning.
“In the business we are in, it is the outcome that is the most important and not the process. The best result Burnley had last season was the 6-0 defeat to Manchester City in the FA Cup, because that’s when he was able to turn around and say these players aren’t good enough.”
Sheffield Wednesday have sealed their Championship return ⬆️
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) May 29, 2023