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Sunday 24 September 2017

Cork: Swans can follow Saints path

New Swansea signing Jack Cork believes his new club can emulate his old one and push for a European place.
New Swansea signing Jack Cork believes his new club can emulate his old one and push for a European place.

Swansea signing Jack Cork feels he has left his Southampton comfort zone behind and now expects his new club to emulate his old one and challenge for Europe.

Cork completed a £3million move to Swansea last week just before the transfer window closed after playing nearly 130 games in three-and-half-years at Southampton.

The former England Under-21 midfielder was offered a new deal on the south coast, but the 25-year-old chose to accept a fresh challenge and now hopes to make his Swansea debut at home to Sunderland on Saturday.

"I think it got to the stage where it was best for both of us, me and Southampton, if I ended up moving away," Cork said.

"Sometimes a new challenge is what you need. Get out of your comfort zone and hopefully this will give me another little boost to get going.

"I'm joining a similar club to the one I've been at - both have come through the divisions, play attractive football and have done well - and it seemed like a good option for me."

Cork left Southampton with the Saints in the top four of the Barclays Premier League and in pursuit of a Champions League place, but he believes Swansea - who lie ninth after winning 1-0 at St Mary's last weekend - should also harbour European ambitions.

"We can definitely get into Europe," said Cork, whose father Alan managed Swansea in the late 1990s.

"The club has had a taste of European football before with the League Cup win a couple of years ago and I am sure everyone here would love to do it again.

"I personally would love to do it because I have never had that opportunity before."

Cork's move could rekindle the international ambitions of a player capped by England at every level from Under-16 to Under-21.

He also represented Great Britain at the London Olympics in 2012, but Cork said he had put thoughts of full in ternational honours on the back-burner with his sole focus on performing well at club level.

"The GB thing was an amazing experience, one of the best times of my career," Cork said.

"But England is not something I have thought about recently.

"You only think about that when you are playing regularly because I think that is something he (England manager Roy Hodgson) looks for.

"If I can start playing regularly my ideas can change, but for now my target is just to play regularly here otherwise that is not going to be a possibility.

"In the short term I just want to finish the season well, to play a big part in Swansea getting as many good results as possible."

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