Laudrup targets De Guzman deal
Michael Laudrup believes Jonathan de Guzman can fulfil his World Cup ambitions at Swansea, provided Villarreal do not price the Welsh side out of a permanent move for the midfielder.
- Related Content
The 25-year-old has grown to become a key player for the Swans since joining on a season-long loan, with his range of passing giving them an extra attacking threat.
20. Jonathan de Guzman
De Guzman has also chipped in with five goals, including two in the Capital One Cup final victory over Bradford.
His form has seen him rewarded by Holland coach Louis van Gaal, who handed the Canadian-born playmaker a first cap in the recent friendly against Italy, putting him in the frame for next year's World Cup in Brazil.
Laudrup has made it clear he would like to make De Guzman's stay at the Liberty Stadium a permanent one, and the player has stated remaining with Swansea is his "first choice".
De Guzman's agent is due in south Wales in a couple of weeks as Swansea look to complete a deal.
But with Villarreal, who are facing a battle to regain Primera Division status after relegation last season, looking to at least recoup the fee of around £7million they paid to sign De Guzman in 2011, Laudrup knows negotiations may not be straightforward.
"I can't say 100 percent what will happen but I don't think that Jonathan will go back to Villarreal to play," he said.
"They may take him back to use him to get some money, but in that situation it is important what the player wants
"They can try to do a lot of things but the player only wants to play in Swansea.
"He is happy here and wants to stay but we cannot say he will be here for certain, as they could put too high a price on him.
"If so we have to start all over again. If he goes back he has two years left on his contract with Villarreal but his desire is to stay here.
"He is very aware of what he has to do, through playing here he has got a debut in the national team and there is a World Cup in 15 months. So if you want to be in a squad for that you need to be playing regularly for a club."
De Guzman and Swansea travel to face West Brom this weekend lying eighth in the table, above the Baggies on goal difference.
With the Capital One Cup securely locked away in the Liberty Stadium trophy cabinet and 40 points on the board in the Premier League, Swansea could be forgiven for winding down towards the end of the campaign.
But Laudrup has challenged his players to secure an eighth place finish, and top what he considers to be the second-tier of the top flight.
He said: "We are top of the table in the other league in this division, and for teams like us and West Brom to compete and go into the top 10 would be fantastic.
"There are still 10 games to go and we have to play the top five teams and teams battling to avoid relegation.
"West Brom also still have an ambition of maybe getting into Europe. They have done great this season.
"But if teams like us finish higher than eighth, then one of the other seven need to have had a bad season."