Daily Express

Guidolin gets loyalty bonus

- Andrew Gwilym

SWANSEA chairman Huw Jenkins has said Francesco Guidolin earned the right to rebuild the club’s fortunes after handing the Italian a new two-year contract.

Guidolin, 60, had looked all but certain to be axed, despite fulfilling his brief of guiding the Swans to safety.

Brendan Rodgers was the leading candidate to take over once the short-term deal Guidolin had agreed in January expired. But Jenkins and his board performed a dramatic U-turn, having been impressed by recent wins over Chelsea, Liverpool and West Ham. The former Udinese boss has signed a two-year deal with the option for a third and is set to be handed a sizeable summer transfer budget, with shareholde­rs in talks over a takeover deal with American investors Jason Levien and Steve Kaplan.

“Francesco fully deserves the chance to continue his good work,” said Jenkins. “He was prepared to come to the club at such a difficult time and put himself in a pressure situation with the club fighting for survival.

“He has earned the right to start afresh next season.” MANCHESTER CITY transfer target Ilkay Gundogan, 25, has been offered a new contract by Borussia Dortmund.

City put their £23million bid for the Germany midfielder, right, on hold after he dislocated a kneecap last week. He has a year left on his current deal. New boss Pep Guardiola may now go for Bayern Munich’s Thiago Alcantara, 25.

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