7.6 C
Swansea
Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Middlesbrough 1-0 Swansea City – Missed chances cost the Swans on Teesside

Swansea City were defeated again this afternoon as a single goal in the first half was enough to give Middlesbrough a 1-0 win over us at the Riverside Stadium this afternoon.   The Swans though will look back on missed chances to get an equaliser on an afternoon where it just wasn’t meant to be.

After the disappointment of last week’s self capitulation against Reading, the talk this week from Russell Martin had been all about the work that they had done to put that behind us and move on with a brave performance on Teeside.

- Advertisement -

Team selection wise, the Swans were entirely predictable except perhaps for the retention of Rhys Williams in the team although there was a welcome return for Ben Cabango into the back three which meant there was still no place in the starting line up for Jake Bidwell.

On the flip side Chris Wilder had talked in the week about his side not being phased by Swansea’s possession based game and maybe the first minute gave an indication of what he meant by that when Whatmore closed down Ben Hamer’s first touch to deflect it for a goal kick before that minute was up on the clock.    It was certainly an indication of the opening stages of the game with the home side winning the ball off the Swans often in our own half and creating some concern in our defence as another early chance was pulled wide of the post as the home side threatened.

 

MIDDLESBROUGH, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 04: during the Sky Bet Championship match between Middlesbrough and Swansea City at the Riverside Stadium on December 04, 2021 in Middlesbrough, England. (Photo by Athena Pictures/Getty Images)

- Advertisement -

For our part in the game we were as true to our game as Martin wanted us to be with some neat first touch passing at times seeing Middlesbrough chasing shadows and on more than one occasion and space often created more so on the left for either Manning or Smith who won a couple of early corners as a result.

It was from some of that space on the left that Manning hit the bar early on and Paterson blazed well over when well placed as the Swans threatened the home goal.   However, shortly after that first chance for Paterson, Middlesbrough found themselves a goal up. A ball from the back saw Jones break the offside trap in a similar position to the one where Carroll broke it last week (if indeed he did!) and it ended with a similar position as he ran into the area and beat Hamer at his near post to open the scoring.

The goal didn’t change the pattern of play as the Swans continued to push forward and a shout for a penalty just before half time was turned down and a yellow card given to Paterson for simulation.  On replay he was touched by the keeper but the referee’s decision would have been influenced by the view that he was going down before he was touched and therefore the decision looked correct.

Russell Martin’s decision at half time was to replace Korey Smith with Olivier Ntcham as he looked to get his side back on level terms and the early stages of the second half could have seen us draw level with the best chance falling to Piroe who rounded the keeper but saw his goalbound shot cleared off the line just as it looked as if he had bought us level.

An exceptionally entertaining game was developing now as the home side pushed forward for a second but were often put back into retreat by a Swans side who sensed that there was at least a point there for the taking.

Middlesbrough were though holding out strong defensively and Martin made a second change midway through the second half when he replaced Williams with Obafemi in search of that elusive equaliser.

MIDDLESBROUGH, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 04: during the Sky Bet Championship match between Middlesbrough and Swansea City at the Riverside Stadium on December 04, 2021 in Middlesbrough, England. (Photo by Athena Pictures/Getty Images)

It could have come a minute later as Swans captain Matt Grimes eyed up a free kick 25yards out but whilst his shot cleared the wall and was on target it was a relatively easy save for Daniels in the home goal as he tipped the effort away for a corner.

A minute later Boro should have sealed the points when Ntcham’s stray pass in midfield sent Whatmore away. You only expected one outcome as the striker ran down on goal but his hesitation allowed the sprinting Ntcham to catch back up with him and the shot blazed over the bar to save his blushes.   It was Whatmore’s last involvement in the game as he made way almost immediately as Wilder made a double substitution.

You sensed even at this stage with 15 minutes to go that the game could go either way as the Swans pushed forward and Boro looked to pressure us with the ball and they almost got a reward with 10 minutes left and some more nervy moments in the Swansea defence but thankfully Hamer cleared.

The game was end to end at this point and both sides could have got themselves a goal as we closed in towards stoppage time.   Good solid Swansea defending denied Boro a chance on 86 minutes whilst thirty seconds later Ntcham was blazing over from the edge of the box.

Two minutes later an equaliser looked on the cards when an accurate pass into the box found Piroe with a perfect first touch but sadly his second blasted the ball over the bar to deny the Swans what the overall pattern of the game probably meant they deserved.

Four minutes of stoppage time gave us hope that there could be a late snatching of that deserved point and that chance almost came as a flick on from Obafemi found Piroe but he could not get the ball under control and his shot away.  The last chance had passed us by.

When we reflect back on this game it will be a game that either side could have won, neither really deserved to lose but ultimately it was just the solitary goal from Middlesbrough that ended up the difference between the two sides.

From Russell Martin’s point of view it was not for the want of trying from the Swans but today it just was not meant to be – two defeats on the bounce was not what we wanted but it was what we got. On another day we could easily have got something.

Forest and a certain Mr Cooper next.

MATCH FACTS AND LINE UPS

OTHER CHAMPIONSHIP RESULTS

LATEST TABLE

NEXT UP FOR THE SWANS

- Advertisement -

SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS WITH US

What are your thoughts?  Leave a comment using the boxes below or pop over to our forums by clicking here and post them there.  If you are enjoying our content then please consider a like and a share using the buttons below.

3 COMMENTS

  1. We were caught short at the back several times when there seemed to be only a back two not a back three. Cabango looked short of pace on the right and Williams was sometimes AWOL on the left. The obvious move is to switch Naughton and Cabango. Evidently that’s too obvious and I’m missing something. Williams’ loss of form is very surprising considering he played for Liverpool quite a few times last season. Anyway the defence needs some reorganisation.

Comments are closed.

Phil Sumblerhttp://www.planetswans.co.uk
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.

MORE FROM THE AUTHOR

As Swans move for Wolf, O’Riley closes in on Celtic move

0
It was suggested there would be one final twist in the tale and that appears to have come today with news that Celtic are closing in on MK Dons highly rated midfielder Matt O'Riley...

QPR, Huddersfield and Blackburn hover as Pato trains with the Under-23s

0
It looks pretty fair to say that Jamie Paterson has played his last game for Swansea City as the fall out of the contract row continues this week with the Swans second highest goal...

An unrecognisable side from Brentford defeat

0
29 May 2021.   The day that Swansea City and Brentford lined up at Wembley for a place in the Premier League.   We know the score, Brentford won (with ease) and we faced another season...

Were we right to send Jake to Coventry?

3
Jake Bidwell's departure from Swansea on Monday was one of what is reported as a number of departures needed this window to fund some incomings into the club as the Swans look to reduce...

Latest News

Move over Darling – Swans set to move on from final MK Dons target

1
It is seemingly increasingly likely that the Swans are set to move on elsewhere and abandon their pursuit of Harry Darling with a loan deal for a new centre half the most likely assuming...

As Swans move for Wolf, O’Riley closes in on Celtic move

0
It was suggested there would be one final twist in the tale and that appears to have come today with news that Celtic are closing in on MK Dons highly rated midfielder Matt O'Riley...

Swans pounce for Austria’s Wolf

0
Swansea City are on the verge of signing highly rated attacking midfielder Hannes Wolf from Borussia Monchengladbach, according to Stuart James of The Athletic Wolf, who had been linked with a move to Celtic for...

QPR, Huddersfield and Blackburn hover as Pato trains with the Under-23s

0
It looks pretty fair to say that Jamie Paterson has played his last game for Swansea City as the fall out of the contract row continues this week with the Swans second highest goal...