Birmingham City a game too far for the Swans

Given it’s Swansea City and the fact that Birmingham were without a win in any of their last seven league games, it was perhaps inevitable that the Blues would beat Russell Martin’s side 2-1 at St. Andrew’s this afternoon.

The Swans were missing Flynn Downes and Ben Cabango due to knocks picked up in the West Brom game, whilst Jake Bidwell was missing due to the birth of his son on Friday afternoon.

Backed by 1,576 travelling Jacks, the Swans controlled the first-half without really threatening the home sides goal and were probably lucky to get away with going in at half-time on level terms, after Scott Hogan headed in Tahith Chong’s cross, only for the linesman to flag offside.

Video replays appeared to suggest the Swans might have got away with one!

It didn’t take long for the home side to take the lead though, as Troy Deeney opened the scoring on 47 minutes, as the home side took full advantage of a heavy touch in midfield, one of many for the Swans it must be said.

Swansea briefly rallied thanks to substitute Michael Obafemi’s first goal for the Swans, finishing off a fine pass by Ryan Manning.

But it was a rare bright spot on an afternoon when the Swans lacked the sharpness of the previous two games and looked visibly tired the more the game went on.

Sadly, substitute Riley McGree, secured all three points for Lee Bowyer’s side, with a fortuitous ricochet off Ben Hamer, after the Swansea keeper had saved his initial shot.

It was no more than the Swans deserved on an afternoon where they looked jaded from the start, with uncharacteristic mistakes, taking nothing away from a Birmingham side who gave us little time on the ball and truth be told, could have won by a far more convincing margin.

Swansea City manager Russell Martin

“We were tired, there’s no doubt about it,” Martin said in his post match interview.

“We lacked the intensity that we had in the previous two games, but I thought we had a lot of control in the first half without really threatening.

“It was really important how we started the second half and we started it really poorly. It was a 10-minute spell that undid us.”

“They looked dangerous, they looked a threat and it was just energy, we couldn’t match that energy, people taking too many touches and some of the decision making and detail wasn’t right because we were tired.

“It’s been physically and emotionally a really tough week.

“It was one game too many, probably, for too many of the players.”

Birmingham City manager Lee Bowyer

“We finally scored a goal, to get three points at home against a good Swansea side. I think we deserved it, if I am ultra critical we could have scored more. We should have won by more.

“They had one real chance in the second half, you have to say their goal was outstanding. Great pass, great movement from the striker and a great finish.

“That’s the quality they have in their squad and he has come off the bench.