Garry Monk is confident Ashley Williams will remain at Swansea City, despite Sunderland making an offer to sign the defender.
The Wales international has been the cornerstone of the Swans back four since his arrival at the Liberty Stadium in 2008, and he has gone on to make almost 250 league appearances for the club. But with just one year left on his contract, there has been speculation that he could be sold during the coming weeks.
Although both Arsenal and Liverpool have been linked with Williams in recent times, Sky Sports claim it is Sunderland who have made the first move for the 29-year-old. Having led the Black Cats to Premier League safety against all odds last term, Gus Poyet is determined to endure a more comfortable campaign next time round but knows he must bolster a rearguard which conceded 60 times season.
Swansea, though, are certain to do all they can to retain the services of their captain. The Welsh side opened talks with the centre-half last week in a bid to tie him to a new contract which would effectively see him remain at the club for the remainder of his playing career, and Monk is confident an agreement will be reached.
“We are in negotiations with his (Williams’) representatives and trying to put a deal across so that Ash will be here for the future of the club,” Monk confirmed to the South Wales Evening Post. “I know Ashley wants that, I want that, and the club wants that, and that’s what we are working towards as we speak.”
Another player who is likely to attract interest over the summer is Wilfried Bony. The 25-year-old enjoyed a fine debut season in England, scoring 25 goals in all competitions, and his stock will rise further if he impresses at the World Cup for Ivory Coast. Arsenal, Everton and Borussia Dortmund have already been linked with the former Vitesse Arnhem ace, but Monk insists there has been no contact.
“There have been lots of stories, but we’ve had absolutely zero contact from anyone about Wilf and the fact is that as a club, we don’t care anyway,” he told Wales Online. “We don’t want to lose Wilf. We want him to stay with us and for him to be part of our future and the fact is that he is under contract.
“He is our player so it will be down to us to decide whether he stays or not. There is always going to be speculation about someone who scored as many goals as Wilf did last season. It’s a part of football that when a player does well, he will be linked with other clubs. But Wilf is our player, so all the speculation doesn’t matter.”