Championship – Swansea City 2-1 Coventry City – Wednesday, 15th September 2010
Match Report by Nigel Gigg
Swans won their third consecutive home game, but this time it was far from easy as a spirited Coventry fought back from a two goal deficit and Swans were hanging on at the end.
After a third away League defeat at Leeds on Saturday it was important that the Swans bounced back. Joe Allen started ahead of David Cotterill. Coventry came into the game having had a decent start to the season with two wins, two draws and just the one defeat.
Swans were soon into their stride with some lovely passing movements but the first clear chance of the game fell to Coventry. Lucas Jutkiewicz tried his luck from distance with a low hard drive. Dorus de Vries should have saved easily but couldn’t hold onto the ball on the wet surface. Coventry striker Clive Platt followed up and failed to pull out of a challenge despite Dorus recovering the ball well ahead of the striker. Inevitably Platt’s outstretched foot caught the keeper in the face and referee Mr Sutton, who was taking charge of his first Championship game, took the softer option and produced a yellow card.
Scott Sinclair had Swans first shot and as with Dorus’s save, Keiren Westwood in the Coventry goal couldn’t hold onto the shot. Unlike Dorus, Westwood was able to recover without having his face rearranged.
Despite dominating the opening 15 minutes it was Coventry that should have taken the lead on 15 minutes when Danny Ward got on the end of a Clive Platt cross and with the goal at his mercy, stabbed the ball wide of the post.
Swans responded immediatedly with a superb move. Nathan Dyer left full back Jordan Clarke for dead and passed inside to Joe Allen. Despite the close attention of the experienced Lee Carsley, Joe turned and fired in a left foot shot that beat Westwood and was only inches away from putting the Swans ahead.
Scott Sinclair was next to shine, beating three men and putting in a wonderful cross. Unfortunately Scott Dobbie was the only Swans player in the box and he had made a run to the near post. Under no pressure at all a Coventry defender turned the ball behind for what was to be Swans only corner of the night. Thankfully, Swans made the most of the gift of a corner as Darren Pratley rose to meet Mark Gower’s cross and put the Swans ahead with a firm header form 10 yards out.
Nathan Dyer almost doubled the Swans lead but his fierce shot hit the head of a Coventry defender who didn’t really know too much about it.
Swans continued to dominate the game but couldn’t get the all important second goal. The 1-0 lead at half time didn’t really reflect Swans dominance.
Just 60 seconds into the second half Swans had their second goal but it was probably more down to Coventry’s defending than Swans efforts. Darren Pratley chased down a poor back pass from sustitute Sammy Clingan, Prats got to the ball just ahead of Westwood but from a very narrow angle his shot struck the post. Coventry had two defenders chasing back but they seemed to be caught flat footed as the goal came back off the post and Scott Sinclair following up made no mistake form 8 yards out.
With the way the game had gone most would have expected Swans to go up another gear and finish the game in style. But it wasn’t to be as Coventry upped thier game and started to come into the game.
Garry Monk made a last gasp to deny Jutkiewicz but from the resultant corner Coventry scored. Swans failed to clear a bouncing ball which fell to centre half Ben Turner who lashed the ball home from 10 yards out.
Coventry continued to press and Swans just couldn’t keep possesion for any length of time. Referee Mr Sutton certainly didn’t help with some bizarre decisions.
Scott Dobbie who couldn’t really get into the game was replaced by Cedric van der Gun and Joe Allen made way for Jordi Lopez as Swans looked to shore things up. The introduction of Lopez seemed to kill off Coventry and late on once more Swans looked the more likely scorers with Nathan Dyer coming closest with a great shot that produced a wonderful save from Westwood.
de Vries 7 – Decent game and had no chance with goal.
Tate 8 – Super game, has become Mr Reliable.
Monk 7 – One terrific clearance and ended the game with a nasty looking head wound following the goalmouth melee when Coventry scored.
Williams 7 – Yellow card for a crunching challenge on Keogh who two minutes earlier had caught Ash with a late challenge.
Taylor 7 – Looked composed and at ease until Coventry scored and seemed a little unsure of himself thereafter.
Dyer 7 – Excellent first half but gave the ball away far too easily in the second half.
Pratley 7 – One goal and one assist but not his best game by a long way.
Gower 7 – Quieter than his first two home games in his new role but did ok.
Allen 7 – Given a torrid time by Carsley, who pushed, harried and kicked him everywhere. Something of a mystery how Carsley ended the game without a yellow card.
Sinclair 9- A touch of class with some steel for good measure.
Dobbie 6 – Worked hard but nothing really came off for him tonight.
van der Gun 7 – Worked hard.