Date:Wednesday December 8 2010
Joe Allen says the squad's strength in depth helps to push the players to perform every game to avoid losing their first team place.
The young Welshman says one of the keys to our success so far this season is the quality of our back-up players - those on the bench who are able to replace those who are injured, or not performing to standard.
A fine example was on Saturday when Darren Pratley was dropped following a poor performance in the home defeat against Portsmouth. He was replaced by Andrea Orlandi who had a decent game and did well to help us maintain possession.
Allen says you have to be at the top of your game week in week out to keep a regular place in the team:
'No-one is safe in this team,'
'We all feel that way and we know we have to perform to keep our places.
'We have players sitting on the sidelines who can really impact on games if they come on or take their chance as soon as anyone in the team slips up.
'That competition is a great thing to have because it makes everyone perform that bit better.'
'The fact that we can go away from home and win with players like that on the bench is one of the reasons why we are where we are in the league,' Allen added.
'If you get suspended or injured, there are players who will step in and really stake a claim for your place.'
Swansea City have a chance to go above Cardiff City and into the top 2 on Friday night when they host Millwall at the Liberty Stadium.
Allen says there's no reason why we can't continue to compete at the top of the table:
'We bounced back after the Portsmouth defeat and that was important,'
'We have done that well this season, and to win the way we did shows the character of the team.
'There is still room for us to improve, but we feel that there is no reason why we can't carry on competing at the top end of the table.'
'My goal is to try to hurt teams in the last third and it's an area where I need to improve.
'I've been told I need to gamble more when the ball is in the penalty box.
'I did that last Saturday and thankfully the ball ended up in the back of the net.'
Date:Wednesday December 8 2010
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|11. Aston Villa||28||8||7||13||-7||31|
|13. Hull City||28||8||6||14||-5||30|
|16. Crystal Palace||28||8||3||17||-19||27|
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