Swansea City Are Not Perfect, Says Russell Martin . . . But They Are Moving Up The Table With Five Wins, Five Draws And Five Defeats

Swansea City head coach Russell Martin. Pic: Getty Images.

Swansea City Are Not Perfect, Says Russell Martin . . . But They Are Moving Up The Table With Five Wins, Five Draws And Five Defeats

By David Williams

Russell Martin insists Swansea City are far from perfect, but they are moving in the right direction as well as up the Championship table.

The Swans head coach saw his team win their fourth home game in a row, and third in four matches in all, with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Peterborough.

They have now played 15 games and they split evenly with five wins, five draws and five defeats.

Three first-half goals from Jake Bidwell, Joel Piroe and Olivier Ntcham were enough to move the club up to 13th in the Sky Bet Championship table.

This was a significant victory for Swansea manager Russell Martin, who won against his former club on Darren Ferguson’s 500th game in charge of Peterborough.

The home side’s passing game was excellent throughout this comprehensive victory at the Swansea.com Stadium, with the visitors lacking a cutting edge in front of goal.

“It wasn’t quite perfect,” said Martin.


“We gave up a couple of chances in the first half which we were a bit annoyed about, but apart from that we were outstanding, really.

“The start of the game summed them up. The intensity, the attitude, their approach to the game, Ethan Laird’s intensity to run and get the ball, and Bidders’ (Bidwell) to make up the ground he did was incredible.

“That’s not something that will be understated in our analysis of the game to the guys, because that was what our performance was built on.

“Their manager, I have so much respect for, but the way he is trying to get his team to play is brave, they try to play as well in a similar manner to us.

“It’s really tough to do that, but I thought our guys really stopped that at source, pressed really aggressively high.

“We scored a goal from winning the ball back really high. I’m just really pleased and proud with the players for their approach towards the game.”

Posh boss Ferguson said: “It was a horrendous start and at that point you are just trying to stay in the game. There were lapses in concentration and if you give the ball away in a terrible area teams will punish us.

“As we’ve seen this season, teams don’t need many opportunities to punish you in this league with the quality they’ve got.


“If you press too much at times, they’ll pop around you. If you sit off them you are letting them have the ball.”

Swansea opened the scoring after 77 seconds. A long ball by Ryan Bennett released Ethan Laird down the right-hand side, with the defender crossing the ball into the box for Bidwell to tap into the net.

Peterborough’s first touch of the ball was from the restart, but they struggled to cope with Swansea’s pace and intensity.

The hosts doubled their lead in the 14th minute, when Piroe’s powerful shot from distance found the back of the net for his ninth goal of the season.

The Swans were in complete control of proceedings as they dominated territory and possession and looked extremely threatening.

Swansea’s set-piece was so much better than in recent weeks as the visitors fought hard to stay in the game, and it caused panic in Peterborough’s ranks when Laird’s shot was blocked following an excellent corner from Matt Grimes.

It took Peterborough until the 28th minute to challenge Swansea’s goal, with Nathan Thompson’s shot forcing goalkeeper Ben Hamer into a terrific save.


Sammie Szmodics also threatened for the visitors when he was found unmarked, but his shot drifted just wide of the post.

However, Swansea were soon back in possession and took a 3-0 lead into half-time when Ntcham’s low shot beat Peterborough goalkeeper David Cornell – a former Swansea player – in the 46th minute.

Swansea continued in the same vein during the opening stages of the second half, with Ntcham and Laird both threatening the goal.

Ryan Manning received the first yellow card of the game when for a late challenge on Thompson, before replacement striker Michael Obafemi almost extended Swansea’s lead by forcing Cornell into an excellent stop.

And he came close for a second time when his shot was acrobatically punched over the crossbar by Cornell.

Flynn Downes received Swansea’s second booking of the afternoon for a mistimed tackle on Jorge Grant, who had been racing down the touchline.

Oliver Norburn had a late chance when he was clear on goal, but the ball was taken by Hamer as Swansea saw out a routine win.


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