Swans 0 Peterborough 2

Tuesday, 21 August 2001, 0:00
2 mins read

FULL TIME REPORT

SWANSEA CITY 0 v 2 PETERBOROUGH UNITED
John Hollins made several changes from the side that started against Oxford on Saturday with Kristian O’Leary back in the centre of defence and Nicolas Mazzina and John Williams being handed their first starts of the season.
The full starting line-up was Freestone, Jenkins, Todd, O’Leary, Howard, Romo, Mazzina, Phillips, Coates, Williams, Watkin
The rain had been lashing down for around three hours in Swansea as the game kicked off and with heavy skies it was clear that the ball would skid off the surface.
Swansea again started brightly and Mazzina in particular seemed capable of running at Peterborough at will. Swansea had a very early chance when Williams broke down the right and sent across a pin point cross which was met by an unchallenged Steve Watkin who failed to trouble the keeper.
As with Saturday’s game, Swansea had plenty of possession but never really threatened the Peterborough goal with only Jon Coates coming close with a shot from outside the area that sailed just past the left upright.
It was Peterborough who stole the initial breakthrough with a goal on the stroke of half-time. Neale Fenn who had come on as a substitute for Farrell after 35 minutes, collected a ball from Williams before turning and hitting the ball past Roger Freestone into the goal to give the visitors the lead.
John Hollins was dealt a blow at half-time as Christian Todd had to be replaced following a leg injury and he was replaced by Nick Cusack for the second half.
Neither side failed to take control of the game in the second half as clear cut chances were few and far between. Roger was forced into one sharp save and Swansea never really threatened to take the game any further with an equaliser.
Hollins made two more changes with the introduction of Appleby for the ineffective (again) Romo and Sidebe for Coates but the introduction of the third striker only seemed to confuse matters even more.
It is clear from watching at the moment that Appleby has lost either the ability or the will to take on and beat defenders whilst Sidebe appeared unclear as to whether he was supposed to be up front or on the wing.
John Williams was frustrating the home crowd with some poor off-sides where he clearly wasn’t watching the line of play and Watkin consistently turned away from the goal instead of to it when receiving the ball.
Mickey Howard came close with a long range effort before Peterborough snatched the second and decisive goal with 10 minutes left. A quick break away saw Andy Clarke unmarked on the left hand side and he easily placed the ball past Freestone to ensure the win.
A large proportion of the crowd had already left when Nick Cusack drilled a free kick at the Peterborough goal in stoppage time which was beaten away by the keeper and this was Swansea’s first and only real shot on target.
Another disappointing performance from a Swansea team that is struggling badly at the moment. There is plenty of possession in the team and despite attempts to play a passing game it is clearly not working.
My observations suggest that we are playing the ball too often behind the man or to feet when they are making runs and therefore having to check those runs. There is alot wrong with the basic footballing principles at the moment and these have to be changed before anything else. After sitting in the centre stand for a change tonight, you see more from a pitch level observation point and watching John Williams spend more time off side than on makes you wonder if these things are being pointed out after the game and being worked on.
It is early doors in the season but there are warning signs there and we will need to see a marked improvement in the play if we are to do anything this season.
That was the Worthington Cup 2001 as far as we are concerned! My man of the match – Gareth Phillips again!

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