|Swansea City 0 v 1 Aston Villa|
Wednesday, 26th December 2018 Kick-off 15:00
Swans Pay The Ultimate Penalty
Wednesday, 26th Dec 2018 18:03 by Planet Swans (follow us on Twitter @swansnews)
The stats will tell you that a late penalty miss by Wilfried Bony was the difference between the two sides at the Liberty this afternoon but the reality is that the facts will tell you there was much more to it as we lost for the second time in five days so far this Christmas.
Bony's penalty may have been saved low to the goalkeeper's right but it just summed up the way that we are approaching games and failing to capitalise on what is generally a possession advantage.
Today it was 59% possession and 19 shots at goal but with only 5 of them on target and none (outside of the penalty) really troubling the Villa keeper whilst we have to rely on some good (and some lucky) saved by Mulder to keep the score to the one goal that was scored after Leroy Fer once again was caught napping in midfield.
Quite why Fer is deemed suitable to wear the captain's armband is beyond many inside the Liberty as we see a player lethargic at best and certainly not one that believes he should be captaining a Championship club. The way he gave the ball away (or rather failed to want the ball enough) in the build up to the Villa goal says much about why our midfield can get overrun and it was no real surprise to see him hauled off shortly afterwards. It has been reported that he can go in the January window but in truth at the moment can anyone see anyone wanting to buy him?
Couple that with an introduction of a completely disinterested Jefferson Montero and the retro look of Nathan Dyer and Bony coming on at the same side and you realise that our league position now is probably about as good as we can hope for come the end of the season. Particularly more so if - as many expect - we see another ineffective transfer window coming our way.
There is much good though about what we do at times with some neat passing, fluid football and the ability to find space with the use of the much famed Swansea triangles. That is until we get into the final third of the pitch when it becomes something out of wacky races and our first touch becomes non existent and our passes into the box invariably find a defender before anyone else.
Watch the game back several times and realise her just how much better a distinctly average Aston Villa side were better than us. Make no mistake this Villa side will be a Championship side again next season as they are simply not good enough to establish a real challenge on promotion. Although they are better than us.
Today we saw the introduction of Carter-Vickers into the side instead of Rodon. That was the right decision with Joe looking woefully out of form in recent weeks. Sadly though CCV is not the answer here and we must look to gain at least one more centre back before we can rediscover what we thought could have been a good defence this season.
And then we come onto Wilf. I really don't understand the love in we have with Bony since his return to the club for a vast amount of money both in transfer fee and wages. From the pathetic publicity stunt that gave him the number 2 shirt to the celebrity status the club seem to afford him we have a player whose best days are well behind him. We need to move him on in January but who the hell is going to be stupid enough to take him on with the terms he would be looking for? After all there is only one person surely who would do that?
That isn't a dig at him for the missed penalty (although he should not have taken it by any stretch) but a dig that we bought a player who had barely played football for three years, Had he been anyone else we would have been up in arms from day one.
The good news is that we will not be a team that will slip into a relegation battle but we have to become a team that is a bit more street wise and one that learns from our mistakes - neither of which we are capable of doing.
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