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What are Villa, Stoke and Swansea trying to achieve?
3:21pm Tuesday 18th February 2014 in Sport By Steve Carley - Midlands Sports Journalist of the Year 2013, @stevecarleyWN
PREMIER League clubs are dispensing with managers so regularly at the moment it is getting difficult to keep up.
This season alone, seven teams have made a change and two of those have come this month.
Felix Magath is the manager of Fulham this week, after replacing Rene Meulensteen, but who's to say it won't be someone else next week.
Swansea sacked Michael Laudrup earlier this month and appointed former captain Garry Monk as head coach, choosing, as Tottenham did with Tim Sherwood, to go down the ex-player route for inspiration.
But it got me wondering just what these teams are trying to achieve.
Fulham are obviously trying to stay up but, presently at least, aren't making a very good job of it.
But take Swansea. They are only in their third season in the top-flight but are currently 10th and also won the League Cup last season.
Realistically, where do they expect to go from here? The Swans, and a whole clutch of clubs like them, are stuck in limbo.
They aren't likely to get relegated but nor are they likely to reach the European places because they don't have the resources to move into the upper echelons of the Premier League. They qualified for the Europa League through their League Cup success.
Essentially, Swansea are now joining the likes of Aston Villa and Stoke of getting stuck in a perennial cycle of doing enough to avoid relegation but not being able to do anything else.
They'll take their extra millions for finishing a few places higher up the table, buy a few players who can't get a gig at a top club, and repeat the process.
Put like that, it is quite soul-destroying. A gulf has been created between top half of the Premier League and the bottom that only a serious injection of cash will solve.
Changing the manager every week just perpetuates the situation.