Showing posts with label Burnley. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Burnley. Show all posts

Monday 2 March 2015

The Audio Jacks: Episode Five - Burnley win, intense quiz, Swans bad boys and a fantasy Dream Team game.

**LATE NOTE: There will be no Sunday morning catch-up or podcast this weekend (8th March) as I am away. I'll be back next week for more irreverent Swansea City action!**

Here we have the fifth episode of the Audio Jacks, Swansea City podcast.

In this episode Chris and Matt discuss the win against Burnley and what it means for Swansea; Matt rants about Scottish football; both discuss the bad boys of Swansea City in the past week; Chris is challenged to an intense quiz; and Matt begins a new Dream Team game.

You can download the podcast to enjoy on your own personal listening device, or just stream from the link below.

All feedback, shares and comments appreciated. Catch us on Twitter - I'm @ForzaSwansea and Matt is at @LMScreamer.

(NOTE: There will be no podcast or Sunday catch-up next weekend as I'm away, but check back again soon for more Swansea City nonsense.)

Sunday 1 March 2015

Cup o' coffee and the Swans (Sunday Catch-up - 1st March 2015)

It's the first of March, it's a Sunday and that can only mean one thing - it's time for a cup of coffee and a look at the week gone by for Swansea City:

(P.S. Happy Saint David's Day)

Burnley 0 - 1 Swansea City

Despite it not being the most enthralling game (last on Match of the Day of course), yesterday's 1-0 victory against Burnley away from home secured Premier League safety for Swansea City... in February!

That's 40 points from 27 games, which is Swansea's best ever return in a Premier League season. And it's a great achievement considering we lost our best striker last month, we've been unable to score consistently and that there was even talk of a relegation scrap earlier in the year.

Good keeper.

So a good result, with a very scrappy own-goal being scored in the 64th minute by Kieran Trippier. Monk stuck with his diamond formation, which seems to be working quite well. Gomis missed a few good chances, Routledge had a penalty shout (but so too did Burnley), while Fabianski once again put in a solid performance and kept out a string of good attempts from the home side.

It's a shame we are out of the FA Cup as that would have been a great competition to focus on now safety is achieved, but it'll be good to see how far Swansea can go this season. Europa League position perhaps?

Bad Swans #1

Unfortunately the usually very-well behaved club have made the news for all the wrong reasons this week.

Firstly Swansea City's Dutch director John van Zweden came under fire earlier in the week for reportedly calling his fellow countryman Louis van Gaal 'an arrogant b******' (...that's 'bastard' if you can't decipher my code) following the Swans' win against Manchester United. However he has since defended himself, saying he didn't actually use the word 'bastard'.

But yesterday morning it emerged that van Zweden had posted a photo of a winning betting slip which had Swansea to beat United 2-1. The Sun reported that the director is being investigated by the Football Association, as any bet made by someone so close to the club would be a direct breach of FA rules. However van Zweden is insisting it was not his betting slip in the first place.

I can't see either of these things going much further, but it's probably wise for the charismatic director to keep his head down for the next few weeks!

Naughty keeper.

Bad Swans #2

And finally, Swans' reserve keeper Gerhard Tremmel was also in the news for some dodgy behaviour. Last week it was reported that the German shot stopper had been given a six month driving ban by Swansea magistrates after failing to reveal to police who was driving his car, after it was caught speeding along Mumbles Road twice last year.

But his ban has now been lifted, with a fine and penalty points awarded instead. Slow down Gerhard, you're not on the Autobahn any more!

Sunday 17 April 2011

Two gifts for Burnley

I don't quite know how to start this blog post. It seems Saturday's game against Burnley was one of the many defining points of the season.

Though technically one automatic promotion spot is still in reach, it relies on too many other factors to go Swansea's way for it to be a realistic dream. But the play-offs are still fully up for grabs, and that is where the team, and fans, should now focus their attention.

Brendan Rodgers explained in a post match interview that his main task of surviving in the Championship is complete (I don't think that task was in any doubt from a couple of games in), and to be in a near play-off position is great. While I will agree with him that it's a great position to be in, being a couple of points off the top spot earlier in the season means anything but promotion would now seem a little disappointing to fans.

Right, I've tried to put it off, but there must be a mention of Saturday's falling apart against Burnley.

I felt, as I'm sure many listening to the dramatic radio commentary did, that Swansea had a great first half and were showing that they were a changed team on the road. Britton and Pratley added some solidity to the midfield and defensive mistakes were kept to a minimum.

Then came the second half. Fabio Borini beat the offside trap and scored his first away goal in a white shirt. Brilliant! The travelling Swans were ahead. This was the time they needed to learn from past mistakes, most recently in the previous game against Hull, and build on the lead. After three minutes things were looking good, Swansea hadn't conceded, they were still ahead. Then... then we hear of an own goal. Ashley Williams is able to beat De Vries with a header, putting the home team level.

An own goal is unlucky. As is a penalty (I'm getting to that). But these two things come from defensive errors and letting the opposition pressure you deep. It's unavoidable at times, but with the Swans dominating the first half and then scoring early in the second, they shouldn't have let Burnley get their heads up. But they did. Then, during the 76th minute, Burnley won a penalty (told you I'd get to it) thanks to a rare Rangel error and the game was as well as over.

What can you say? It is crushing. If it was a 1-0 loss, say, after Burnley had strung together a few nice passes early on in the game then shut up shop, it wouldn't have been so bad. But to literally gift Burnley with two easy goals, after taking the lead, shows that Swansea don't have the cutting edge they need to consistently win games.

There was no blaming the bowling green pitch this time and the "curse of the black shirts" wasn't a plausible excuse either.

Nevermind though! As I said, it's disappointing but the play-offs are just around the corner and, so long as Swansea can pick up about six points in the next four games, they will be around to battle for that final promotion spot. A good idea would be to get the results with minimal effort (is that possible?) and rest some vital players at home, so everyone is refreshed and raring to the play-off games. This is one of the best positions the team has been in in many, many years so, despite little disappointments, the team as a whole should be applauded.

This brings me onto my side note: the Mark Gower incident. I have yet to see this, but rumour has it (and there are many) that one/a few travelling Swans fans were shouting abuse at Swansea as they left the pitch (singling out Gower). Gower retaliated by showing one or more fingers to this group. What can you say? Not much. A minority of stupid fans get over emotional and then hurl abuse, which shouldn't happen, no matter how angry they feel. Meanwhile, Mark Gower shouldn't have reacted. He is a professional and, despite being full of emotion himself, is being paid handsomely to act in a specific way. A role model to youngsters should just suck it up and let the cool headed fans sort the abusers out. Lesson learnt: just leave the stands in silence if you didn't think anything of the performance (this goes for players and supporters alike).

With that, I leave you with this thought. Swansea vs Cardiff, Wembley, May 30th. Anyone fancy that?

Friday 15 April 2011

Bite-size Blog: Swansea vs Burnley

I feel that writing about 'the importance of winning at Burnley' is a waste of time. You all know. There is no reason to “big it up” - it's already massive. This game, like the remaining four Swansea will play, will define the season.

Swansea regularly start with the likes of Pratley and Britton on the bench and it gives the illusion of squad depth. While this does show that there are plenty of options for the three midfielders, a change in attack seems to stump everyone.

Brendan Rodgers appeared desperate for a second goal against Hull, and ended up throwing on Priskin, Moore and Beattie. Three strikers. Swansea can't function with three strikers. What he really needed was a solid, speedy winger to replace Sinclair or Dyer, and then a man-for-man swap of Borini with either Beattie or Priskin (...or Moore). However, there is nobody to replace Dyer or Sinclair. If one of them does get fatigued or injured during a game, there is no replacement. Van der Gun? He can do a wingers job, but he isn't as creative or fast.

It may be a little late to get a winger on loan, but that is what the team needs. Even if they aren't used they'll be there just in case the worst happens or, like we saw against Hull, something needs to change.

What results mean:
A win could see the Swans end the day in 3rd, providing Cardiff lose. 2nd place is just out of reach after Norwich beat Nottingham Forest. More than likely, a win for the Swans would see them hold onto the 4th place spot. If Cardiff slip up then all the better, but a win is vital to keep the pressure at bay.

A draw wouldn't be the end of the world, though it's certainly not what Rodgers and his men should be aiming for. If Reading (5th) lose or draw, Swansea would remain in 4th. If, however, Reading win, the Swans would slip down to 5th.

A loss is, needless to say, not worth thinking about. It would probably impact the table in the same way as a draw: Swansea would fall to 5th if Reading win. A loss would be crippling to confidence levels for the following game.

Betting on the game?
I feel confident that Swansea will hold it together under immense away pressure and get a victory. They wasted a chance on Tuesday against Hull. As Rodgers has said, the team need to be more aggressive away from home. They can't buckle and concede an early goal as this would destroy any team spirit.

I will say a 1-0 win to the Swans looks promising. Burnley have lost their last four games (and haven't won for six) and do concede plenty of goals, but Swansea's away form isn't the best. Still, I feel the travelling Jacks will have the edge. It may be worth covering 1-1... just in case.