Coventry City vs Swansea City
22nd August 2009
After picking up our first point of the season on Tuesday night in a goalless draw at home to Reading, Swansea City will now be looking for more improvement when we travel to Coventry City this weekend.
It's been a difficult start for Paulo Sousa. He's struggling with the amount of changes that have occured at the club over the Summer and a number of regular first teamers are missing. Not only that, but our strict wage budget means he hasn't been able to attract quality replacements for Jason Scotland and Jordi Gomez.
This weekend we're up against former Swan Chris Coleman who has seen his side make a promising start to the season, winning their first two games before Doncaster held them to a goalless draw in mid-week. The Sky Blues had a disappointing season last year where they finished a lowly 17th place, and when we asked Vital Coventry for their thoughts on this campaign, they didn't have much confidence that they'd show much improvement.
The Swans meanwhile need to show more quality in the final third, we dominated the second half against Reading but we struggled to convert our chances into goals. Stephen Dobbie did everything but score, Nathan Dyer missed two great opportunities and Mark Gower missed the best of the game when his first half penalty kick was saved.
It'll be a tough game for our attackers on Saturday, we're up against last season's best goalkeeper in the Championship - as voted for in the team of the year. Not only that but the defence in front of him have conceded just 1 goal in 3 games.
Swansea boss, Paulo Sousa:
'Coventry are a very enthusiastic team full of belief,'
'They are also a confident side with a great attitude and we will need to match them in order to get a result.'
'I'm not surprised by Coventry's start at all,' added Paulo.
'It won't be easy going to face a side in the form that they are in and as I've said we'll have to match them.
'You can't be surprised in the Championship - every team will have their good moments and bad moments during the season.
'It is a tough competition and you need to have confidence in yourself.'
'It's just a matter of time before we put the ball in the net.
'We do create chances, as everybody saw on Tuesday night against Reading, and I believe that I have the quality in my squad, in every position, to score goals.'
Coventry City manager, Chris Coleman:
'We have defended well and the back four has been outstanding.
'I am not worried about Swansea's past results but I will worry about Swansea on Saturday afternoon and when we kick off, it will have no bearing on the result, I promise you.'
'They like to get the ball on the ground and pass it around. Swansea have always been a good footballing team so we need to make sure we maintain our team spirit and try and keep our good start going.
'I'm still not going to get carried away with the way we have started this season. I would be exactly the same if we had lost the first three games.
'The important thing is to take each fixture as it comes and that continues on Saturday.'
After their midweek draw at Doncaster, Coleman said:
'They're a good team, I'd pay money to watch Doncaster play, but it's a point gained for us and two lost for them.
'In the first half we were poor. Too many of us had under-par performances. 'We were too frivolous with possession but thankfully the back four held firm and kept their efforts at distance.'
Coventry City Team News:
Coventry City are likely to name an unchanged side on Saturday afternoon with no fresh injury concerns for Chris Coleman following their midweek draw at Donsaster Rovers. None of their injured players have returned either since the game.
Leon McKenzie (Achilles), James McPake (Broken Collarbone), David Bell (ankle), Freddy Eastwood (flu), Daniel Ireland and Curtis Wynter (hamstring) are all sidelined.
Player to watch: Michael McIndoe
McIndoe joined Coventry in the Summer from Bristol City and on his day he cause the opposition a lot of problems. Angel Rangel should be a good match for keeping him quiet though. Coventry's top goalscorer is Morrison with 3 goals in 3 League games.
Swansea City Team News:
Paulo Sousa is willing to change his team around slightly for each game. He's brought Dobbie in up front recently in place of Gorka Pintado while youngster Kerry Morgan made an impressive debut in midweek on the left wing.
The back is unlikely to change as Marcos Painter continues to gain fitness following a long term injury. Mark Gower moved to the centre on Tuesday night to allow Morgan to start on the left. He didn't look comfortable or confident in that role and Sousa might consider bringing Jordi Lopez in to start his first game if he's fully recovered from a dead leg.
Midfield quartet of Tom Butler, Joe Allen, Ferrie Bodde and Darren Pratley are all sidelined with injuries, so too are Guillem Bauza and Albert Serran.
Player to watch: Stephen Dobbie
Dobbie was impressive in midweek and did everything but score really. His link up play was excellent and he's capable of creating his own chances and getting an accurate shot on target. You can tell though that he needs his first goal to boost his confidence. Once the first one goes in you can expect more to follow.
Match Facts & Stats
Last season, the two sides drew both their games at their respective grounds. 0-0 at the Liberty Stadium and 1-1 at the Ricoh Arena.
Swansea City have beaten Coventry City away since 1949.
Stephen Dobbie is top of the shooting statistics in the Championship, with 23 shots in total in all competitions, 11 of which were on target.
In the last 6 games, Coventry have won 2, drawn 2 and lost 2. The Swans have won just once in the last 6, drawing 1 and losing 4.
Head to head: Swansea wins - 5, Draws - 6, Coventry wins 11.
P T Crossley
2008/09 Stats: 37 Games, 98 Yellows, 5 Reds.
In just 4 games this season, P Crossley has sent off two players, and has handed out 15 yellow cards.
Last season he was in charge of two Swansea City matches. Our 2-1 FA Cup win at Histon, and the 2-2 draw away at Derby in March.
Assistant Referees: M Blackledge and R L Metcalfe
Swansea to draw 1-1
I can't see us scoring enough goals to win games at the moment but I'm hopeful our defence is solid enough and we add another point to our tally.
Predict the score in our Prediction League here
Tuesday 25th August
Carling Cup 2nd Round
Swansea City vs Scunthorpe
Saturday 29th August
Swansea City vs Watford