After the midweek stalemate with QPR, the Swans showed what can be achieved when they aren’t faced with ten men behind the ball and the chances flowed through the game as they dominated pretty much from start to finish.
To their credit Southampton were braver than QPR and played some neat football but they never really threatened to break their duck against the debutant keeper Krysiak.
A nasty looking injury to Marcos Painter could be the downside of the afternoon – his agony heard from the back row of the East Stand as he went down in a heavy – but fair – challenge with a Southampton player.
Roberto made two changes from the side that started against QPR. The obvious change forced on him with the injury to Dorus whilst Tom Butler came in on the left flank ahead of Mark Gower leaving the Swans to line up as follows
Rangel Monk Williams Painter
Gomez Britton Bodde Pratley Butler
The Swans started brightly and found themselves the early goal that they craved. A great Bodde (?) ball to Butler saw the winger outpace the defender and as he looked up he saw – and found – Pratley who steadied himself with his first touch before shooting home with his second to give the Swans the lead. Just what the doctor ordered.
From there on in we clearly dominated the first half with plenty of possession and the midfield engine again seemingly able to recover any ball that went astray. Angel Rangel could, and should, have doubled the lead before half time when played through but he found only the side netting when a shot to the far post was probably the correct option. At the back, Monk and Williams were dominating the particularly crap Bradley Wright-Phillips and his team mates with Krysiak looking composed on the few occasions he was called into any form of action.
But at half time, the one goal lead was what the Swans held and Roberto’s team talk was no doubt for more of the same with rewards surely to follow. It was just five minutes into the second half though when Painter went down under challenge. His agonising yell was there for all to hear and an immediate inspection from Richie Evans was followed by a call for a stretcher and for the second time in four days Alan Tate replaced a stretchered off Swans player.
Tate slipped into the right back role with Rangel moving to the left and it was from the left side that the Swans doubled their advantage. A Ferrie Bodde shot from a free kick was saved but spilled by Davis and Gomez was first to react to give the Swans a two goal advantage and surely the three points.
Pintaso replaced a jaded looking Scotland with the work done for the afternoon and no doubt with Roberto having an eye on two road trips next week. And he played a part in the Swans third. Breaking into the area he lost possession but it eventually worked it’s way to Tom Butler who drove low and hard and off the keeper into the net for the third goal that the Swans probably deserved.
Southampton fans headed for the exit as the home fans enjoyed another unbeaten afternoon at the Liberty Stadium and the late change of Febian Brandy for man of the match Leon Britton was met with a standing ovation for the Swans midfielder.
Another very satisfying afternoon at the Liberty and the Swans again match their season high position of 7th place as the Swansea train heads for Wolves (Tuesday) and Doncaster (Saturday)
Great times again