REPORT: Doncaster 0 Swansea City 0

Tuesday, 29 September 2009, 21:32
2 mins read

If someone had suggested to you back in July that for one game this season we would line up with a midfield of Tom Butler, Ashley Williams, Jazz Richards and Mark Gower you would probably have given them slightly more than a glance to wonder if all the marbles were intact.

But that is exactly what we were forced into tonight thanks to the absence of Nathan Dyer, Jordi Lopez, Leon Britton, Ferrie Bodde and Joe Allen not to mention Darren Pratley’s name being in the matchday 18 for the first time this season.   In that list there is more than enough players to get into most Championship midfields which put into perspective the problems currently faced by Paulo Sousa.

But his team selection on the evening was spot on and it was maybe with some disappointment that the travelling support left the Keepmoat maybe a little disappointed that they could not get the win that their play probably just deserved.

Reverting to a 4-4-2 line up, Paulo’s patched up midfield slotted into the formation as follows: –

Dorus

Rangel     Tate     Monk     Painter

Butler     Richards     Williams     Gower

Pintado      Beattie

There is little doubt that the Swans were the best side in the first half.   After Woods had tested De Vries with a free kick that brought a booking for Rangel it was Swansea who dominated possession with some nice linked play with both Butler and Gower showing a constant threat on the flanks.   Ably supported by Painter and Rangel the Swans looked as if could be just a matter of time before they scored.

Gower and Beattie combined well to create a chance for Pintado that he just failed to connect with whilst a Gower corner was headed against the bar as the Swans looked for the opener.  Good work for Pintado played in Beattie who saw his shot saved by Sullivan whilst the best cross of the first half from Butler again just eluded Pintado as the Swans went in goalless but not for the want of trying.

Doncaster could have scored in the opening seconds of the second half as Swansea stood off Woods (?) whop curled a shot just wide much to the relief of the Swans defence who seemed to have been caught cold.   The play was much more balanced in the second half but – as Doncaster fans commented after the game – they had plenty of possession but rarely looked like breaking the deadlock.   De Vries was called upon on a couple of occasions to keep the home side out but in the main the line of Rangel, Tate, Monk and Painter were as solid as we have become accustomed to this season.

Pratley was introduced into the game to replace the tiring Beattie and was immediately at the heart of the midfield play.   His running is something that has been sorely missed and the sight of him back in the side was another plus point of the evening.   Dobbie was another to make his return as he replaced Pintado and almost immediately was shooting from distance over the bar as the Swans went back in search of what would have been a vital goal.

And it was Dobbie who set up the best chance of the second half when he worked well down the Swans right and his low hard cross was almost connected with by Butler who was sliding in at the back post.  An excellent game was drawing to a close and the 0-0 scoreline was in no way an indication of a dull game between two sides who I think will end up higher than their current league positions suggest.

The Swans left to warm applause from the travelling fans appreciative of the efforts made during the performance and certainly giving hope of better things to come in terms of results – and that is taking nothing away from a great effort tonight.

More than happy with a point although we could easily have won this one.

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