RIGHT-BACK Curtis Obeng hopes a change in manager does not stop him featuring for Swansea City’s first team in pre-season.
Obeng’s impressive form for Wrexham last season earned him many admirers and the 23-year-old joined Premier League side Swansea in the January transfer window for a six-figure fee.
Brendan Rodgers, who took Obeng to the Liberty Stadium, has taken over as Liverpool boss and been replaced in the Swansea hot-seat by former Real Madrid, Barcelona and Denmark player Michael Laudrup, who has previous managerial experience at Brondby, Getafe, Spartak Moscow and Real Mallorca.
Swansea are due to tour America in pre-season and Obeng, yet to appear for the first team, hopes to get his chance.
“I have been involved with the squad for every home game since I joined Swansea and I also travelled to Old Trafford for the Manchester United game which was not bad at all,” said Obeng.
“Game wise I have played for the reserves three times so it was great to get involved with the lads and get back to competitive football.
“I have not had that much football since leaving Wrexham so it was good to get some games. I am just waiting to get first team action with Swansea now.
“The manager leaving means I am out of the window for the time being. He told me I would be involved in pre-season but with a new manager coming in, anything can happen so we will have to wait and see. But hopefully I get my chance.”
As for the departure of Rodgers, who led Swansea to an 11th place finish in their first season in the Premier League, Obeng commented: “Good managers attract a lot of attention. He said he wanted to stay but Liverpool are a massive club and I wish him all the best.”
Former England youth international Obeng, who joined Wrexham in August 2009, is indebted to the Reds for helping resurrect his career after he was released by Manchester City.
“Wrexham will always mean a lot to me,” said Obeng.
“I was in no man’s land when I left Manchester City, I had only played for the reserves and hadn’t played a first team game.
“It is hard to get where you want to be but Wrexham signed me and helped me improve. I loved every minute there and got a fantastic move.”
Obeng saw Wrexham’s promotion challenge come to an end last month when they were beaten by Luton Town in the play-off semi-finals for a second year in a row despite a spirited fight-back in the second leg.
And after finishing the season in second place with a club record 98 points, Obeng felt Wrexham deserved to win promotion.
“I am still in touch with a few of the lads,” he said. “I watched a couple of games on-line and I was at the home game against Luton as well.
“I was gutted – devastated – not to see the boys go up. To finish with 98 points and not get promoted is a joke.
“The league needs to look at it and have two clubs going up automatically and another through the play-offs.
“Wrexham had such a good season and to come away with nothing after getting that many points is not on.”
But Obeng is optimistic Wrexham will finally end their Football League exile.
“Having been so close for the last two years you have got to think it will be third time lucky,” added Obeng. “Whenever I get a free weekend I am going to be there cheering Wrexham on.”