FOR a club of Swansea's stature the recent comments about how good the football they play is could be seen as backhanded compliments.
The more cynical amongst us would expect a team making its way in the Premier League to be far more – how shall we put this – pragmatic. Keep it tight at the back, bypass midfield – midfield is for the Uniteds and Arsenals of the world anyway – and score goals off the back of big, strong strikers who thrive on 'route one' ball.
It's safe, it's what is expected and more often than not it's totally and utterly ineffective. Quality teams, even moderately talented ones, will generally find a way through a defence no matter how heavily packed if given the run of the park in around the middle, but that's what is expected of new sides. Sides managed by guys like Aidy Boothroyd. We praise them for their guts and battle and watch them go straight back down again.
That's what makes Swansea so thrilling to watch. They're probably going to avoid the drop and they're going to do it by playing football. Good football. Seriously good football. Their display against an admittedly poor Aston Villa this week was really enjoyable to watch.
There's nothing naive about this team.