CHAMPIONS – Yeovil Win But Swans Top League

Saturday, 19 April 2008, 17:40
3 mins read

You kind of expect a Championship party to be preceded by a comfortable victory over your opponents with celebrations through the stands for 45 minutes or more as your team glides towards its goal by winning the league with some style.  You do not expect to win the league on an afternoon where you put in one of your worst performances of the season and are handed the title by a goal scored by Southend almost 400 miles away.

But titles are not won on a single afternoon in Swansea – they are won over the course of the season, a season that has delivered so much throughout its course – and of course it delivered the Championship to us last week at Gillingham.

Next week it is the silverware at the Liberty as the Swans walk away with the honours in League One and we can now look forward to not seeing the likes of Yeovil again – despite the fact that they deserved to beat us this afternoon.

Had this been the Swansea we had seen all season then we wouldn't be celebrating promotion now.  We looked tired, we seemed incapable of stringing a series of passes together and Yeovil simply seemed to want it more.  They had a game plan and they stuck to it as the Swans struggled to get any impact on the game from start to finish.

There were some moments but they were few and far between as goals from Skiverton and Downes gave the visitors a two goal cushion and Andy Robinson's late effort was little more than a consolation as they secured their League One status for another season at least.

There was a home debit for Ashley Williams but no Marcos Painter again as Kevin Austin slotted back into the left back role whilst Tom Butler was recalled in place of Paul Anderson and Febian Brandy in for last week's two goal hero Guillem Bauza

Dorus

Tate     Williams     Lawrence     Austin

Butler     Britton     Pratley     Robinson

Scotland     Brandy

As already mentioned the Swans never really imposed themselves on the game and any hope that the 18,000 crowd had of watching a performance worthy of Champions soon disappeared – possibly the moment that Darren Pratley elected to pass when it seemed like to shoot was his only option.  If you were to pick a fault in Pratley this season then this would probably be the one that you would choose.

But his lack of shooting was echoed around the team who were left with a series of corners but no real great chances to reflect on when they found themselves a goal down.  A cross from the right was bundled home by Skiverton who timed his run to perfection – unmarked you understand – to give Yeovil the lead not against the run of play but at the time it was difficult to see anything other than a 0-0 in the scoreline.

Swansea were giving the ball away cheaply and should have gone two down when Stewart headed straight at De Vries from another cross from the right – a feat he repeated in the second half with a cross from the left.   Yeovil were on top and around the hour mark doubled their advantage.  De Vries was left a mere passenger as Downes shot from the edge of the area went into the back of the neta and whilst the champagne was not on ice it was not being cracked just yet around the Liberty Stadium.

Robinson pulled one back with ten minutes to go when he seized on the rebound from his own header that had been cleared off the line but it was not to be the title winning goal – that honour went to Lee Barnard at Carlisle who headed in Mark Gower's cross to hand the League One title to Swansea

It didn't take long for the news to filter through to the Liberty and the five minutes of stoppage time were accompanied by the chants of "Championes" as the Swans prepared the party.

The final whistle was greeted with the tannoy announcement of the Carlisle result and the Swans were there with two games to spare.  A lap of honour sparked scenes of joy at the Liberty with the promise of silverware next week.  No thoughts of court cases or talk of certain Northern teams in sight.  The way that it should be.  This was about Swansea City.

WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS!

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.
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