Just four years after lighting up the Premier League and playing for the Spanish national team, Michu’s career came to an end. However, as Alasdair Hooper writes, his time in wales should never be forgotten.
There are many iconic one-hit wonders out there – Chesney Hawkes, Peter Andre, Los del Rio – but one of the greatest in football is Michu.
In July 2012 the relatively unknown Spanish forward arrived at Swansea City from Rayo Vallecano for around £3million.
Soon enough his name was on the lips of many football fans. On his Premier League debut the Spaniard scored twice and recorded an assist in a 5-0 thumping over Queens Park Rangers. That set the ball rolling and he never really lost momentum.
At the end of the 2012-13 season, he had scored 22 goals in 43 games across all competitions and helped Swansea City win the League Cup, scoring in the final against Bradford City.
That was the club’s first major trophy success and it’s no surprise he was named the team’s Player of the Season and the supporters’ Player of the Year at the end of the campaign.
He was also called up to the Spain squad eventually making his debut in October 2013.
But then everything changed.
That form from his first season never returned as Michu’s appearances and goalscoring dropped off – with injuries playing a massive part.
In his second Premier League season he had appeared just 17 times and scored twice. In all competitions he only scored six.
During the summer of 2014, Michu joined Napoli on loan with the option of a permanent move but that also proved to be unsuccessful. Injuries meant he only made six appearances and he was subsequently returned to Swansea, before being released in November 2015 following the agreement of a financial settlement.
While injuries had evidently taken their toll on the forward his next move was a surprising one as he joined amateur side UP Langreo, before returning to his hometown club Real Oviedo in August 2016.
In the 2016-17 season with Oviedo, he managed to make 27 Segunda Division appearances for the club he loves but the injuries continued to have an impact.
Ultimately, in July 2017, he called it quits and retired from professional football aged 31. Just four years after lighting up the Premier League and playing for the Spanish national team, his career had come to an end.
So, what is Michu up to now? After retiring he bought shares in Oviedo and was then appointed Director of Football at Langreo.
But in April 2019 the now 34-year-old returned once again to Oviedo once again as technical secretary – a role he still holds to this day. That’s just another reminder of how much he loves his hometown team, who currently lie 11th in the Segunda Division.
But, while his time with Swansea will go down as one of the greatest one-season wonders in Premier League history, his time in Wales will never be forgotten. He does still have that League Cup winners medal after all.
You can follow Alasdair on Twitter @adjhooper1992