Well, well – Super Sunday truly lives up to its name if you happen to be a Swans fan!
An exciting and significant game, with goals from Scott Sinclair, Nathan Dyer and Danny Graham, cancelling out the two Arsenal scored (Van Persie and Walcott). It's significant in the sense that Arsenal are the first “big” team Swansea have taken three points from this season. Notice I said first – Chelsea are just around the corner.
So, what went right this Sunday?
The team selection worked. While the keeper, back four and striker usually write themselves, midfield is always a headache (albeit a good one). This time, the combo of Allen, Agustien and Britton worked well in the first half, with Dyer and Sinclair both well on form at the same time (for a change).
Dyer deserved the man of the match award – well-earned from the little winger after setting up the penalty and scoring a fine strike himself. It was the third game in a row in which he scored, meaning he is becoming more of a well-rounded player, combining dizzy runs and an abundance of speed with goals... finally. He'll be a target for a number of teams come the summer.
This kind of thing I felt was missing in the first half of the season: long shots. by anyone, not just Dyer. Walking every ball into the goal was never an option in this league. I'm not sure what has changed recently – a managerial decision or just more confidence – but long shots are being taken more frequently, with some being scored. Good.
At half time I felt Kemy Agustien was taken off a little prematurely – he was having a decent game. However, Gylfi Sigurdsson made an appearance and the decision paid off. Nice to see the Icelandicman (Icelandian? Ice... forget it) slot into the squad with ease. Midfield is surely well equipped now, especially with Josh McEachran on his way next week. Britton, Allen, Gower, Agustien, Orlandi, Sigurdsson, McEachran... as each game goes by, it is hard to see where Stephen Dobbie will fit in.
Captain Ashley Williams did well enough to quell most of the danger, though his passing was uncharacteristically sloppy at times and, though he looked dangerous going forward, his runs left a few gaps when the ball was intercepted. He did enough to have a good game though, as did the rest of defence.
Arsenal were decent. I personally don't mind them as a team (apart from when they consistently cock up my betting accumulators!) and there is plenty of talent in their ranks. I'm sure you'll agree when I say I wasn't comfortable with a one goal lead at 2-1 or at 3-2. It could have feasibly gone three ways with ten minutes left on the clock; thankfully it went the right way.
I'm not praising Arsenal too much – just enough to drill home the fact that it wouldn't be such a significant win if they were shit! I'm sure a number of those sitting in the home stands / corporate boxes only came to see Thierry Henry and team-mates grace our small city, yet left with a new found love for the Swans (or so you would hope).
So, Swansea start the week 10th in the table. With a winnable game against Sunderland on Saturday, the Swans are finally looking like the complete Premier League team.
A disappointed gooner here. It was never a penalty, as has been subsequently proved, but I was very impressed with Swansea, even more so than at our place early on the season. I said then if the Swans maintained that level of performance, staying up wouldn't be a problem, and that would be an understatement. With Fulham a fortnight ago and now you lot, Arsenal have been outplayed in two consecutive league games, which hasn't happened in years. Your boys play good pacy passing football, with a great spirit and attitude (the penalty was a ref error rather than a dive..dyer probably genuinely thought he was fouled), and hopefully can continue to provide an antidote to the stoke city's of the world, with their brutally effective caveman stuff. Good luck for the rest of the season, and I hope you finish top half (but behind us of course!).ReplyDelete
PS. Gylfi is a really good loan signing. I think he could do a job for my lot...a sort of less attacking Bergkamp-lite...two-footed with a great shot and passing range...an inspired substitution too...
Many thanks - it was a good game, very entertaining.ReplyDelete
The Sigurdsson sub was tactical it seems (not because Agustien was injured as I first thought) and worked very well - he'd be great to secure permenantly!
All the best, until we meet again (more than likely next season!)
I'm loving the way Swansea play the game this season. We'll always entertain, whether we win or lose, but the way we play is getting results. Credit to the manager and players. Sigurdsson looks like he could be useful too.ReplyDelete
Great result for Swansea and just shows you can win games by playing your way. Fantastic to watch and I hope they keep with it and home form stays as amazing as it is at the moment.ReplyDelete