Paul Clement insists star man Gylfi Sigurdsson’s “dream” to play for a big club will not distract Swansea’s battle to stay in the Premier League.
Icelandic playmaker Sigurdsson is far and away Swansea’s most influential player, being involved in 53 per cent of their goals this season.
Sigurdsson’s 11 assists are the highest in Europe’s top five leagues and he has also scored eight times in Swansea’s stuttering campaign.
Even if they stay up, Swansea appear to have a fight on their hands to keep him this summer.
The 27-year-old raised speculation of a move while he was away on international duty, even though he extended his Swansea contract last summer until June 2020.
“It would be a dream to play for one of those big clubs,” Sigurdsson was quoted as saying in the Icelandic media this week.
“Hopefully if I continue doing well for Swansea and Iceland, then in the near future I can play in a big club.”
Sigurdsson will be a key figure again when Swansea host relegation rivals Middlesbrough on Sunday.
Swansea are three points above the relegation zone and five points ahead of Boro, although the north-east side do have a game in hand.
But Clement said that Sigurdsson’s comments about playing for a big club do not bother him.
“It is good for a player to have ambition to play at the very highest level,” Clement said.
“I’ve no problem with Gylfi saying that because what I see in him is a player very motivated to play well here and help us remain in this league.
“I’ve had no conversation with him about going elsewhere. Everything has been about training hard and doing his best for Swansea every day.
“I see it in training, in the gym, in the video room. I see it in the extra work he puts in and, that for me, is no coincidence why he is such a good player.”
And Clement, the former Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Real Madrid number two, feels it is Sigurdsson’s willingness to work which makes him a top player.
“The top players have talent, but they also have an unbelievable work ethic,” Clement said.
“All the best players I have worked with have this work ethic and Gylfi has that.
“That will make him a target for others. It will always be the case for all clubs below the very top ones in Europe.
“Those clubs are always going to be looking for better players. It’s no surprise.
“But we shouldn’t worry about this. Our focus now is on preparing for Middlesbrough and the next nine games.
“After that it will be very clear what level we’re playing at next season and what our plans will be.”
Clement is due to meet Swansea’s American owners Steve Kaplan and Jason Levien next week.
The businessmen are travelling from the United States to attend the home games against Middlesbrough and Tottenham on Wednesday.
“I spent some time with Steve and Jason on their last trip here in January, but it was only brief,” Clement said.
“We’ve got some meetings planned looking at what we’re doing at the moment and also in the medium term as well.”