|Swansea City 1 v 0 Nottingham Forest|
Wednesday, 17th February 2021 Kick-off 19:00
Swansea City v Nottingham Forest Pre Match : No sideshows as Cooper remains focussed
Tuesday, 16th Feb 2021 09:00 by Steph Thomas
In the light of a variety of reports that Steve Cooper has caught the eye of premier league Crystal Palace the swans welcome Nottingham Forest back to the Liberty on Wednesday night. The swans need to get back to business quickly as the form side in the league after the disappointment of another match day postponement.
Steve Cooper looked more focussed than usual as he dismissed rumours of his potential departure from the Liberty. His coolness when questioned made it quite clear, nothing will disrupt his planning and the greater Swansea collective as a huge hit of games is on the horizon. In the light of a racist attack on Jan Dhanda via Instagram - and Facebook resulting in a shockingly lenient censorship of the online abuser. South Wales Police continue to investigate the incidents after last weeks loss to Manchester City.
“There are no sideshows and certainly nothing to talk about said Cooper. The important thing is we stick together and carry on with our work. The training ground today has been excellent. The boys regrouped after the called-off game. No-one was asking for time off. We know we had to get that extra work done on the weekend. We're all in that bubble and there isn't room to talk about anything else apart from committing to what's right in front of us. We’re focused on what’s in front of us, and I’m no different."
Cooper is focussed and won’t let anything deter him from his role at Swansea
Delighted that Korey Smith is to be available for selection Cooper said “Korey's a really positive influence. On and off the pitch. He's a bubbly personality. You see it in the way he plays as well. Very much wants to be involved in everything. So it's good having him around again. He was very visible anyway even when he wasn't available. Matchdays, he was still with the lads in the dressing room. Likewise on the training ground. Obviously he's done well for us this year and we'd rather him be available than not."
Korey Smith is back in contention
Chris Hughton at Forest has again come under fire from supporters after his sides 0-0 draw against Bournemouth on the weekend. His failure to make changes in game, something Steve Cooper has received some criticism for this season was evident post match. What can be said is Forest played one of their better more tactically sound games on Saturday. In Hughton’s mind there was no need for any game changes. Hughton was upbeat in the glare of Wednesdays game and knows only too well Conor Hourihane, a player he states he wanted to sign is one of Swansea’s key players.
On injuries Winger Sammy Ameobi (knee), midfielders Samba Sow (ankle) and Harry Arter (calf), and defender Scott McKenna (ankle) all remain sidelined. “Ryan Yates trained this morning, which was really good news,” said Hughton. He’s one we would consider; we have to consider, because he’s somebody that’s a very fit lad. Wednesday may come too soon. But if not Wednesday, then he’s very close after that. He is the closest one. It’s about making a decision on him. But it’s really good to see him back on the training pitch and he’ll train again tomorrow. He’s a fit lad and certainly hasn’t been out as long as some of the others who have been out during the course of the season, but it is probably still a little bit too soon for Wednesday.”
Ryan Yates is borderline for the game on Wednesday
One thing is for sure, as a complete group Swansea City will ‘Take the knee’ pre match in unity with their colleague Jan Dhanda, and to promote an anti racist message from the club. Cooper has stated before it is the players wish to do so and reiterated it again this week. A win for the swans would keep them in contention with Brentford and Norwich City at the top of the league. Norwich who found their goal scoring form beating Stoke 4-1 on the weekend visit Coventry on Wednesday, and Brentford who surprisingly lost at home to Barnsley on Sunday go to QPR.
Cooper knows this game will once again reaffirm his sides credentials for promotion if they take the points. The recent 5-1 win against Forest in the FA Cup means nothing now, it’s what’s ahead that matters most. The game kicks off at 7pm.
Photo: Action Images
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