By Paul Jones
Steve Cooper insists there is no guarantee of a new manager “bounce” when Bristol City visit the Liberty Stadium today.
The Robins have appointed Nigel Pearson as their new manager following the sacking of Dean Holden, but in one sense the recovery period has already been sparked as the managerless Robins won 3-1 at Middlesbrough in midweek.
Swans head coach Cooper knows the visitors’ caretaker coaches Paul Simpson and Keith Downing – who have both been retained – from his time with England U17s.
He says their presence is more of factor that any upturn from a new appointment above.
Pearson was a spectator at Swansea’s 1-0 win over Coventry City on Wednesday and asked about the former Leicester City and Watford boss’s impact and the bounce factor, Cooper said: “I don’t know to be honest. It’s not a science is it? We won’t be paying any attention to it.
“I actually know the coaches at Bristol City really well, I worked with them both and England, Keith Downing and Paul Simpson.
“But we’re just focused on ourselves and hopefully it’s enough to get us another positive day.”
After four wins from four at the start of this campaign, Bristol City dropped to mid-table after enduring a run of 11 defeats in 15 league games since December 1, which led to Holden’s sacking as head coach.
Pearson signed a short-term contract until the end of 2020/21 but has already expressed his desire to stay at Ashton Gate beyond this season and says his long-term aim is to build on the foundations for success.
Swansea’s immediate fate remains firmly in their own hands as they sit a point off the automatic promotion places with two games in hand on all the teams above them.
They will look to maintain that push when they entertain the Robins and while much of the pre-match focus has been on the subject of Pearson’s appointment, Cooper’s own attention has been firmly on making sure his side are ready to go again.
“They’re all massive tests. We won’t pay too much attention to them changing manager or recent results,” he said.
“Obviously we do our opposition analysis, but the focus will be on us.
“We’re at home, we’ve just had a good win and we want to make it two in a row to get momentum going again. That’ll be our only focus. It’s a good game to look forward to.”
Cooper may opt to start with former Bristol City midfielder Korey Smith in his side after a number of recent appearances off the bench in which he made an impact.
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Smith spent six years at Ashton Gate and made 196 appearances before joining Swansea last summer.
“It’s a club that is close to my heart. I spent six years there – my children were born in Bristol,” he added.
“I had great times there, but obviously it’s business as usual on Saturday. When that whistle goes, it’s all about getting three points. After the whistle, I can say hello to a few friends.
“They’ve got a new manager and they will be looking to impress him. They come here with confidence after beating Middlesbrough in midweek, but we’ll focus on ourselves and look to do what we can to win.”