Shrewsbury 0 Swansea 0

Saturday, 5 April 2003, 0:00
3 mins read

Home >Story Index> Shrewsbury 0 Swansea 0

Report By Clive, Gareth and David Hughes
On a very warm spring day they came from far and wide to sleepy Shropshire, as all roads led to Gay Meadow, for just short of 2,000 travelling Swans. Another pressure game that will decide our future.

With the first team regulars, Britton, Thomas & Nugent missing, the Swans lined-up.

Cutler

Jenkins, Smith, Tate and Howard

Maylett, Phillips, Martinez and Johnrose

Watkin and Richards

A strange sight before the game in the warm up as Roger Freestone joined the team in their warm up exercises. Note to Rog go into training first before next Saturdays routine, you’ll never make a dancer.

Anyway to the game. A very uneven pitch saw very few good moves from either team, as, that coupled with the tense atmosphere saw a very low-key affair with very few shots on goal. The Swans defence dealt with everything that Shrewsbury could throw at them, as their makeshift attack, missing their two leading scorers offered very little. It was likewise with the Swans as their man mountain Artell of a defence dealt with everything we had to offer which was in fact again very little as Richards & Watkin did not gel as a partnership. Shrewsbury had the majority of possession with the Swans living off scraps, as time and time again clearances were not held in attack, giving possession back to Shrewsbury. Each side had half chances but woeful attacking and tight marking resulted in the keepers not being unduly worried. We did have one heart stopping moment when a shot from inside the area went low across Cutlers body, he dived low pulling off an excellent save, and with a Shrewsbury player charging in for the rebound Jenkins completed the clearance with a bicycle kick volley to safety. So half time came at 0-0 with no real pointers to how the second half would go.

The second half was much the same as the first with both teams putting the effort in but again the pitch, heat and the importance of the game seemed to get the better of the two teams. Again there were no clear-cut chances on goal from open play, but both teams did get the jitters from corners. Phillips was replaced by Mumford and Watkin by Williams to try and change things. After being on the field for only a few minutes Williams chased a through ball and found himself half a yard clear near the edge of the box, instead of shooting he laid the ball off but under hit it and the chance was gone. Shrewsbury had had the better of the first half, but the Swans evened things up by taking the second half. One chance of note deep into the second half was a free kick outside the box to the left of centre. Martinez went for a Kiddie special but this time high over the bar, much to the disgust of Jason Smith who had positioned himself to the right of goal and was shouting for a ball to run on to.

Not much can be added about the game as for all the work put in by both teams, it wasn’t the best of games, but another away point in the bag, where three today would have been more than welcome.

Much has been written about the performances of referees this season, well today we can add the linesman. Especially the one running the line nearest the Swans fans in the second half. He gave many dubious decisions, with off sides being given when clearly, even from a biased viewpoint, they were not. This is not to say it was just against us, as decisions were strange all afternoon. Smith & Martinez again picking up bookings.

As far as performances, the defence battled well. The midfield again played as a unit, without creating too much. It was again in attack we were lacking as very little came from the front two and Maylett seemed to think twice before taking players on.

So overall not a brilliant game, but the team did show resolve. Five more games to go, let’s hope we can stand the pressure as results from Exeter and Bristol Rovers went our way.

Excellent support from the travelling army, who totally outsung the home fans.

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