Last season was a dark one for anyone affiliated with Swansea City. Throughout the campaign, it became increasingly apparent that the club had become disconnected from the identity it had established in its six prior seasons in the top flight.
In fact, that identity had been slowly slipping since Garry Monk's 2015 departure. And while Paul Clement was briefly able to revitalise the club, steering them to safety in the 2016/17 season, his departure in December meant it was the third consecutive season the Swans would change their manager before the new year.
Such frequent, if often necessary, changes meant that there would be no new Brendan Rodgers or Roberto Martinez at Swansea. No one would be able to restore the brand of attractive, 20 passes at a time, flowing football that saw them rocket from League Two to top half Premier League finishes in just eight years. But after a seven-year stay in the top flight, having spent the last two flirting with the drop, their relegation from the Premier League finally came.
Relegation served as an indictment to those making the decisions at the club - a clear notice that something had to change, and the right appointment had to be made, as the club entered the uncharted territory of attempting to bounce back to the top flight.
In their position, a safe managerial appointment would have made logistical sense, having just watched Sunderland suffer back to back relegations to League One. But Swansea wanted to restore their identity with something ambitious - an appointment for the long-term.
And that's where Graham Potter enters, stage left.
Potter's achievements managing in Sweden have been well documented.
For those not in the picture, though, he took Ostersunds from the fourth division and established them in the top flight, winning a domestic cup in the process and taking them into Europe, where they famously battled Arsenal last season. A Scandinavian Swansea, if you will.
With fellow relegated side Stoke opting to appoint established Championship manager Gary Rowett, and West Brom sticking with Darren Moore, the appointment of Potter
Losing 3-0 at home to Wigan— Frank Lampard's Ryan O'Meara (@_omeara_r) August 22, 2018
Down to 10 men
Booked for dissent
Fans chanting "you don't know what you're doing"
Good night for Gary Rowett.. pic.twitter.com/GPM4Al6ltl
So encouraging from a Swansea perspective. Went head-to-head with best team in Championship and unlucky not to win. Potter doing wonders, now he needs the US owners to step up and back him in the loan market.— Phil Blanche (@philblanche) August 21, 2018
Stoke City, by comparison, spent near £40m on players, and have picked up two points to Swansea's eight, demonstrating just how difficult it is to get it right with a new squad in the early stages of the Championship season.
It's no secret that the Championship is no easy division to get out of. Only five clubs in the last 10 years have managed to bounce back at the first time of asking, while four have suffered back to back relegations in that time.
The one negative in Swansea's recent efforts to become number six, is that the football on show so far hasn't been as free-flowing as you'd expect from the Swans in their prime.
However, even the best sides don't win 3-0 every week. Swansea, so far, have shown that they have the required edge to their game to get results when things aren't all going their way; and it is that, above all, that wins championships.
Results are what matter early on. With the confidence growing with every point, and key players returning from injury, we can expect to see Swansea start to dominate games - and possession - sooner rather than later.
Graham Potter and his team still have a lot to prove, but we can say, definitively, that they have laid the foundations for a strong push back to the Premier League, both in their results and in their personnel.
Swansea fans can once again go and watch a team of young, exciting players, who know how to win.