Swansea City 1-0 Rotherham United – lacklustre Swans scrape past rock bottom Millers

Saturday, 13 April 2024, 18:10
4 mins read

Swansea City may have picked up three more points this afternoon against a Rotherham side long since consigned to relegation but all it did serve to achieve was to highlight just how big the job is ahead of us this summer.

On another afternoon where the team didn’t even flatter to deceive they just deceived as the walking football was back and they showed large periods where they could not break past a defence that has conceded more than eighty goals this season.   Our lack of pace, creativity, desire and passion was clear as was the sheer fact that Rotherham’s keeper probably hadn’t had an easier afternoon too many times this season.

The optimists amongst the support will point towards another game where we grabbed more than seventy percent of the possession and had six shots on target but the reality for me this time was we were facing a side beaten thirteen times in their last seventeen outlets and we never looked like a side that now has thirty more points than them this season.   That is how bad Rotherham were and any other side in the division would have fancied their chances against us this afternoon.

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With an unchanged side from the one that started the midweek victory against Stoke Luke Williams had called for us to repeat that level of performance but we never got near those levels and we certainly never got near the ones that saw us cruise past Cardiff City just a few short weeks ago.   We have to accept that this level of performance is the norm for us and the games where we play a high pressing and intensity game are rarities.   These kind of performances that we witnessed today happen too often for them to be anything other than the level of performance we can expect from this crop of players.

Andy Coleman and Paul Watson have a huge summer ahead of them if they want to avoid a despairing relegation battle next season and, based on the evidence of this season, there is nothing to suggest that they have it in them to deliver what is needed.   There were several players out on the pitch today who should have been playing for their futures but some frantic arm waving when they decided the effort to keep the ball was too much was as much as they could muster.    A midfield that contains Matt Grimes, Jay Fulton and Ollie Cooper is going to produce more games where they are ineffective than not and Jamie Paterson on the left wing is broadly as successful as Adrian Forbes at wing back – it will work sometimes but again that will not be the norm.

There were moments when we stepped a little away from the walking football to which we have become accustomed but the final pass, the shot on goal or even a level of composure we can expect from a professional footballer was all too often missing.  More alarmingly is a lack of awareness as to what each other is doing resulted in so many passes just aimlessly ending with a Rotherham defender with the Swans player woefully out of position.    That is either poor training plans or just a pure lack of communication but whichever one it is it isn’t good to watch.

Yet again we saw so many season ticket seats empty and whilst a crowd in excess of 15,000 was announced there were never that many in the ground and even less as the game went on.   People are drifting more and more away because of the standard of the football and that should alarm those in the power seats at the club as much as the poor standard of football that is served up on the pitch.

That massive summer is looming large on the horizon and still we look at the standards of recruitment that we saw last summer and wonder what dreadful decisions that we will make this time around.   Most of our loan signings are now no longer to be seen anywhere near the first team places, two of our signings are playing elsewhere and our Ukranian striker remains on the bench with no gametime despite his multi million pound price tag.   This is down to Andy Coleman and Paul Watson solely and yet we will have them going again this summer.   Worried?   We should be.

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There were a few high spots, a couple of good efforts at goal in the first half and the conversion of a pretty poor Liam Walsh corner into an own goal being the obvious ones.    Carl Rushworth was largely a spectator but you would expect that against a side who have won just four games this season.   Harry Darling and Ben Cabango at the back look by far our best bet as a centre half pairing and there were signs in the first half that Key and Ronald were starting to build a better understanding but yet again the Brazilian faded in the second half as he has done in pretty every match he has played to date.

Thankfully relegation is no longer on the minds of Swansea fans but the word remains at the forefront of many when they think about next season and, based on displays like today, that is totally understandable.






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

Phil Sumbler

Been watching the Swans since the very late 1970s and running the Planet Swans website (in all its current and previous guises since the summer of 2001 As it stood JackArmy.net was right at the forefront of some of the activity against Tony Petty back in 2001, breaking many of the stories of the day as fans stood against the actions where the local media failed. Was involved with the Swans Supporters Trust from 2005, for the large part as Chairman before standing down in the summer of 2020.


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