- Associated Press - Thursday, December 21, 2017

SWANSEA, Wales (AP) - Player-coach Leon Britton will take charge of Swansea for its Premier League match against Crystal Palace on Saturday following the departure of manager Paul Clement.

The 35-year-old Britton, who has been a midfielder for Swansea for the last 15 years, joined the coaching staff last month.

Britton said he doesn’t want to take the job on a full-time basis.

“It is not to say I wouldn’t take it in the future, but I just think at this moment in time it is not the right move for me,” Britton said Thursday. “I’ve been asked to help the club out, which is something I will always do. But in terms of the immediate future, I am not looking to be the full-time manager.”

Former Manchester United midfielder Ryan Giggs applied for a vacancy at Swansea last year, losing out to Bob Bradley - the predecessor to Clement.

Giggs, who played for Wales, said Thursday he wasn’t interested in replacing Clement.

Clement was fired on Wednesday with the team in last place near the midway point of the season.

Swansea has lost all but two of its last 10 league games and is four points from safety. Clement took over in January with the team in a similar predicament and guided it to a 15th-place finish.

“It was by far my proudest and greatest achievement as a coach,” said Clement, who was an assistant to Carlo Ancelotti at Chelsea, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain.

“However,” he added, “this season, in very challenging circumstances, I was unable to replicate the positive results.”

Frank De Boer, who was fired by Crystal Palace in September after just four league games in charge, is among the managers being linked with the vacancy at Swansea.

Britton said he did not know how long he would be filling in as the interim coach.

“Speaking to the chairman (Huw Jenkins), it was a case of we’ll go day by day,” Britton said.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

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