Swansea City’s recent success is all down to club chairman Huw Jenkins, according to former Swans boss Paulo Sousa.
The Welsh outfit were close to extinction in 2001 but, 12 years later, they sit ninth in the Premier League and have their first ever Wembley final to look forward to against Bradford in the League Cup.
Swansea were also close to dropping out of the football league in 2003, but were saved by a supporters trust, and Jenkins took over as chairman just a year later.
Sousa has now tipped the Swans to qualify for the Champions League under the 54-year-old’s stewardship.
“In their project I don’t think they ever thought of the Champions League but in reality if they keep doing how I expect, with the right decisions being made by Huw Jenkins, it is something that can be their next step,” Sousa told BBC Sport.
“All difficulties can become opportunities, especially if you have visionaries around and I see Huw Jenkins as a visionary.
“It’s something already that they are competing with top clubs, who are financially quite strong and can bring in top players to win all these competitions. Swansea are a short step to compete internationally for (those players).”
Michu, a two-million-pound summer signing has particularly impressed this season with 13 league goals and, despite being committed to the club until 2016, Sousa expects Swansea to struggle to hold onto their prized asset.
Sousa continued: “If he keeps that performance level it will be very difficult (to keep Michu). But I’m sure they already have ideas to bring in other players which can help keep them competitive.
“They have the base of a football philosophy to sustain the capacity to be competitive (in the Premier League), and also in Europe.”