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Swansea City 2 v 0 Blackburn Rovers
SkyBet Championship
Saturday, 31st October 2020 Kick-off 15:00
Swansea City v Blackburn Rovers : Pre Match Review: Team News Andre Ayew Captain! Grimes benched
Friday, 30th Oct 2020 08:30

The swans go in to Saturdays game against Blackburn after a successful week results wise, even considering the referee decision last Saturday to give Bristol City a draw. Tuesdays win against Stoke was the most impressive of the season so far and the 2-0 win worthy of the performance. It could have been a lot more. The pre match review will be updated with news, team news etc as we progress towards the game.

Steve Cooper Press Conference

Cooper seems relaxed and positive as he talks about allowing the players space and time to believe in the ethos he has introduced to Swansea City. Belief, confidence inability and adequate rest seem to be the key. It is definitely working and although the loss of Gibbs-White until 2021 has been confirmed Cooper and Marsh must surely be converting believers in to their own abilities and long term plans for the club. Marsh already attributed to many of the tactical game management we see every week has been with Cooper not only at Swansea but when with England and Liverpool youngsters. The partnership is paying off for sure, and the swans are the main benefactors.

Mike Marsh at work as Swans coach

It would be hard to change such a successful side from Tuesdays picks. Manning on his debut was excellent, and Bidwell came on in the second half to clinch the game for the swans with a deft chip for Palmers brave finish. As stated Palmer was brave for his goal and added some grit in to the play after replacing Jamal Lowe. Tactically Cabango for Bennett paid off and the latter will almost certainly start against Blackburn. To have a few more players in that Cooper wanted, especially Bennett and Manning ( and we are yet to see Joel Latibeaudiere ) all three are permanent fixtures after a busy deadline day window. On the loan front man Viktor Gyökeres found himself on the bench on Tuesday but it is possible we could see him on Saturday, however a winning team is a winning team.

BlackBurn Rovers Injury Crisis

Tony Mowbray doesn't expect to have any returnees to his Blackburn Rovers squad ahead of Saturday's Championship fixture against Swansea City. Bradley Johnson and Amari'i Bell dropped out of Rovers' 18-man squad for the fixture against Reading in midweek after the pair both displayed symptoms of coronavirus. Joe Rothwell had participated in first-team training on Monday after returning from a period of self-isolation but complained of a back spasm ahead of Tuesday's fixture and he was forced to sit out. Daniel Ayala has missed Rovers' last two fixtures after sustaining a groin injury in the defeat to Watford while Thomas Kaminski suffered a groin tweak himself during the victory over Coventry, and Mowbray is yet to issue a timeframe on their return. Their absences follow on from the long-term injuries to Bradley Dack, Lewis Travis and Elliott Bennett meaning Rovers face the prospect of eight first-team players missing from their squad as they travel to South Wales.
As a result, Rovers are missing key players in several positions but Mowbray is not looking to make excuses as they aim to impose their attacking game on Swansea at the weekend.

No excuses, plain talking Tony Mowbray

Who could damage the swans hopes today ?
Adam Armstrong is the in-form striker in the Championship, scoring 10 goals in all competitions already this season. He added two more on Tuesday night; one an exquisite volley and the other a diving header - the first header of his career, can you believe it? He's added a poacher-like element to his game and he's just as menacing in the box as he is outside of it. You can't afford to give him half-a-yard or he will punish you. Lewis Holtby has been the orchestrator of all things incisive in Blackburn's attack. He will be key to unlocking defences as the season progresses, while Ben Brereton looks in great form over recent matches. And of course, Harvey Elliott. At 17, he's a superb talent.

Swansea did not pick up any new injuries against Stoke and Steve Cooper is set to have the same group of players to choose from.

Ryan Bennett came off as a precaution against the Potters but is fit and available to face Rovers, while Joel Latibeaudiere is in full training after arriving from Manchester City with a minor injury.

George Byers, meanwhile, has suffered a setback in his recovery from a groin problem, and Morgan Gibbs-White is a long-term absentee.

Pre-match views
Steve Cooper: “It’s important we let the supporters know we are fighting for something here, it’s a real motivation for me and the team to do well for them. It might be a welcome release for somebody to watch their team play on the streaming service the club provides.
We are very mindful of that, and I will continue to remind the players they are playing for a community, and that parts of that community and the supporters within it are going through difficult times. We have not forgotten about them, we are fortunate we can go to work, we can get some fresh air and we can get interaction with team-mates and staff members. That’s not the case for everybody else. To all the Swans fans out there that are maybe finding it a hardship with Covid, I want them to know we are fighting for them and we are here for them.”

Tony Mowbray (via the Lancashire Evening Telegraph): “They have some players who are pretty consistent for them, Grimes and Fulton and then Ayew who is a high-class player.
They have a sprinkling of young players around that, they have just sold one of them to Tottenham, and I think it’s a good game for us. They had a good result in midweek, we know it’s a tough game, every time you go to Swansea you know it’s going to be a tough game. But we feel as though we’ve been doing well on the road and we’re looking forward to the challenge.”


Swansea City: Freddie Woodman; Kyle Naughton, Ben Cabango, Marc Guehi; Connor Roberts, Korey Smith, Jay Fulton, Jake Bidwell; Yan Dhanda; Andre Ayew (captain), Jamal Lowe.

Substitutes: Steven Benda, Ryan Bennett, Ryan Manning, Kasey Palmer, Matt Grimes, Wayne Routledge, Viktor Gyokeres.

Blackburn Rovers: Aynsley Pears, Ryan Nyambe, Derrick Williams, Adam Armstrong, Lewis Holtby, Harvey Elliott, Tom Trybull, Ben Brereton, Joe Rankin-Costello, Darragh Lenihan (captain), Corry Evans.

Substitutes: Antonis Stergiakis, Sam Gallagher, Harry Chapman, Jacob Davenport, John Buckley, Scott Wharton, Tyrhys Dolan.

Referee: Dean Whitestone

Swansea City head coach Steve Cooper makes three changes for this afternoon’s clash with Blackburn Rovers, as Andre Ayew captains the Swans.

Ben Cabango, Jake Bidwell and Korey Smith come into the starting line-up as Ryan Bennett, Ryan Manning and Matt Grimes drop to the bench.

For Grimes it ends a sequence of 89 consecutive Championship games in which he has played every minute, stretching back to a defeat at Aston Villa in October 2018.

Freddie Woodman retains his place in goal, with Cabango joining Kyle Naughton and Marc Guehi in the Swansea City defence.

Connor Roberts and Bidwell are the wing-backs, with Smith partnering Jay Fulton in midfield following the Scot’s impressive showing against Stoke in midweek.

Yan Dhanda continues in the number 10 role, with Ayew and Jamal Lowe leading the attack for the hosts.

Photo: Action Images

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