An emotional Francesco Guidolin reflected on “a very fantastic moment” with Swansea City’s supporters after the season-ending 1-1 Premier League draw against Manchester City.
Veteran Italian coach Guidolin was a surprise January appointment as Garry Monk’s successor at the Liberty Stadium, but has helped to steer the club away from the threat of relegation and towards some impressive results during the run-in.
Guidolin was rewarded with an extended two-year contract this week and his team dug in to withstand a Manchester City onslaught on the back of Kelechi Iheanacho’s early opener, earning a share of the spoils courtesy of Andre Ayew’s deflected free-kick on the stroke of half-time.
Swansea’s players and staff were warmly received on the pitch by the home faithful afterwards, something Guidolin reported to be an unusual experience when compared to his time in Serie A.
“After the final whistle it was a very fantastic moment for me on the pitch with the players, their families, their children and our fans,” he said.
“Here it is a fantastic family and I am very happy for this. Another surprise for me – in Italy were are not used to having these moments.
“I am happy because the moment was not simple in January and now we have a comfortable place in the table.
“I am proud for me and my players deserve this position because we have a good team.”
Despite Manuel Pellegrini’s team only scraping a fourth-placed finish with Sunday’s point, Guidolin felt Swansea acquitted themselves well against opponents he believes to be the most talented in England’s top flight.
“It was a good performance, a good result against, in my opinion the best team in the Premier League for quality and a lot of big, big players,” he added.
“The game was good and we played well. I am happy. This is a good memory.
“I hope next season can be more enjoyable but football is complicated and it is not possible to say beforehand what you can do.
“Next season will be another history, but I am ready for another challenge.”