Swansea City’s promotion hopes took another blow on Saturday as they were held to a 2-2 draw against relegation-threatened Wycombe Wanderers, although the biggest concern for Steve Cooper may well have been the injury suffered by Andre Ayew.
The Ghanaian international went down injured early on and was replaced by Wayne Routledge with just nine minutes on the clock, which seriously dented the Swans’ attacking threat, as only a late fightback prevented a defeat against Gareth Ainsworth’s side.
Following the game, Cooper provided an update on Ayew, saying:
“It’s early to say, he’s walked off with a hamstring injury, or so we think.
“I haven’t seen him yet. It’ll be 24 or 48 hours before we know the extent of the injury.”
When asked if the 31-year-old would miss the home game against QPR on Tuesday night, Cooper responded:
“It would seem that way but we don’t know yet. You can’t walk off after eight minutes and play three days later unless something extraordinary has happened. But we don’t want to speculate.”
A hamstring injury seems likely to keep Ayew out of action for a few weeks at least, meaning that he could end up missing a significant portion of Swansea’s remaining fixtures before the playoffs.
After dropping two points against Wycombe, automatic promotion seems to be off the table. Fortunately, a place in the playoffs is all but guaranteed for Cooper’s side, so if the former West Ham forward can make his return before then, it may not impact the Swans’ season too much.
However, given his impressive form this season, it would be a massive blow for Cooper’s side if he were to miss the playoffs and could potentially define whether or not they can seal a return to the Premier League.
Ayew is currently Swansea’s top scorer in the Championship, having scored 15 goals in 41 appearances so far this season, which has helped him average an impressive 7.14 rating – the highest of any player in the current Swansea squad.
Earlier in the season, Cooper lauded the attacker’s influence on the pitch and in the dressing room, saying:
“Andre is a leader, regardless of whether or not he wears the armband.
“He always stands up and leads by example. He’s a massive influence at this club.”
Therefore, it would be a significant blow to lose the £3.6m-rated forward for an extended period, and whether or not he can get back to fitness before the end of the season could end up defining which league Swansea are playing in next season.