Own Goal Puts Swansea Through In League Cup
12th December 2012
Swansea City needed an 81st minute own goal to see them progress through to the Capital One Cup Semi-Final after a difficult and testing home tie against Middlesbrough.
Tony Mowbray's Championship looked by far the better of the two sides in the opening 45 minutes, as Laudrup's team lacked any enthusiasm or desire to win the game.
The hosts were slow in possession, particularly in the middle third, and allowed the visitors to steal the ball to create promising chances in front of goal.
Swansea City manager Michael Laudrup made a few changes to the team, but he definitely wants to do well in the competition given that he started the likes of Michu, Britton after an injury, Dyer and Routledge.
Tiendalli replaced Angel Rangel at right back, whilst also in defence, Monk replaced the suspended Ashley Williams.
Grant Leadbitter was creating Middlesbrough's best efforts in the first half, and they went close to scoring after just 30 seconds. There was good build up play in the box but fortunately the final effort was easy to save for Tremmel. Most of Tremmel's saves were in fact straightforward throughout the game, the only one that wasn't was when he had to parry a shot, that luckily fell to a defender to clear the danger.
Middlesbrough, competing with Swansea's arch rivals Cardiff City for promotion to the Premier League, just needed that extra cutting edge. For the hosts meanwhile, it summed it up perfectly what they needed to score when Hines headed into his own net from a tricky de Guzman corner.
Mowbray's side were set up well, and remained disciplined to stop the Swans from getting anywhere near into their stride, as they struggled to keep the ball for any decent length of time.
In the second half, Michael Laudrup made two very much needed substitutions. Shechter, a spectator at best, made way for Luke Moore, who added something extra up top, while Routledge was replaced by Ki. The South Korean played a far bigger role in helping our cause in the second half, simplifying things in the middle third and allowed us to dominate possession.
The Swans finally got involved into the tie, and their progression up the field knocked the momentum that Middlesbrough had built from a promising first half performance.
Incidents arrived in the second half too as Bikey avoided a possible red card for a last-man challenge on Luke Moore. Referee Lee Probert also decided to take no action on a very decent penalty shout on Ki, who was brought down after definite contact inside the box.
The South Korean also gave de Guzman a chance as he put the Dutchman through on goal, but his weak left-footed shot was an easy save for the goalkeeper.
Dyer then crossed for Michu who's effort was blocked, as the hosts hoped to avoid extra time.
They did so, but with help from the opposition. Garry Monk challenged Hines to win de Guzman's corner, and the latter found the corner of the net with his head to gift Swansea City an unlikely lead.
Still, Middlesbrough still had time and a chance or two to put the scores level again and play an extra 30 minutes - the least they deserved.
Tremmel failed to deal with a corner under his crossbar, and Hines was unable to make up for his own goal as he somehow headed over a foot away from the target.
It wasn't going to be Boro's day as McDonald then slid in at the far post but he couldn't reach a pacey low cross from the left flank deep into the five minutes of injury time.
Swansea City's hardly deserved to progress to the League Cup Semi-Final and Middlesbrough will be bitterly disappointed they didn't make the most from a promising first half.
Swansea: Gerhard Tremmel, Dwight Tiendalli, Garry Monk (capt), Chico Flores, Ben Davies, Leon Britton, Jonathan de Guzman, Michu, Nathan Dyer, Wayne Routledge, Danny Graham.
Subs: David Cornell, Angel Rangel, Kyle Bartley, Kemy Agustien, Ki Sung-Yueng, Luke Moore, Danny Graham,
Middlesbrough: Jason Steele, Justin Hoyte, Andre Bikey, George Friend, Grant Leadbitter (capt), Nicky Bailey, Emmanuel Ledesma, Seb Hines, Lukas Jutkiewicz, Scott McDonald, Faris Haroun.
Subs: Jayson Leutweiler, Kevin Thomson, Marvin Emnes, Andrew Halliday, Stuart Parnaby, Ishmael Miller, Richard Smallwood.