29/09/2012 14:00 v Stoke City

22nd June 2017

A Peter Crouch double sent the Swans to their third consecutive Premier League defeat at the Britannia Stadium.

Despite an improved second-half display, the Swans never recovered from the first-half double as the giant Crouch earned Stoke City their opening win of the campaign.

Swansea made a bright start, keeping possession well in the opening minutes.

But the first chance fell to Stoke when Charlie Adam delivered a dangerous cross to the far post. With Crouch waiting, Angel Rangel did well to head behind for a corner which the Swans defended well.

Stoke were on top, and took the lead in the 12th minute. Swansea lost possession in the middle of the park and Michel Vorm was forced to save well from Jonathan Walters at the expense of a corner.

Whelan delivered and Crouch was left unmarked to head home from eight yards.

Danny Graham tried to force a response in the 20th minute as he picked up a loose pass on the edge of the area, but his shot failed to trouble goalkeeper Asmir Begovic.

The visitors didn't panic though and stuck to their passing game on a slow surface as a fine through ball found Rangel who forced the corner with 26 minutes gone. But Begovic came to take the cross far too easily.

Two minutes later, good combination play involving Nathan Dyer, Pablo Hernandez and Graham saw Michu fire just wide from the edge of the area.

Stoke were soon forcing the Swans back on the defensive though as they swung in deep crosses from either flank to the waiting Walters and Crouch.

And with 36 minutes gone, Stoke were 2-0 ahead. Geoff Cameron's cross into the box wasn't cleared and after Walters's shot was blocked, Crouch drilled home his second from close range.

Leon Britton blazed an effort over the bar from the edge of the area in the dying seconds of the half, but as the Swans trailed off at the interval, they were left with a mountain to climb.

Swansea started the second period brightly as Ki's shot was deflected just over for a corner which Stoke cleared at the second attempt.

The visitors looked as if they had the chance to pull one back in the 54th minute when the overlapping Ben Davies went down inside the area under a challenge from Cameron, but instead of a penalty, referee Jon Moss booked the young Welshman for simulation.

Swansea were soon on the attack again as Dyer raced clear only to be crudely pulled back by Walters who was booked with 56 minutes gone.

Hernandez fired just wide as Swansea started to push forward more. But it proved to be his last piece of the action as the Spaniard was replaced by Wayne Routledge with 62 minutes gone.

The Swans were getting closer though as Graham fired over after the visitors had forced two consecutive corners.

Pulis responded immediately to Swansea's growing influence by bringing on Matthew Etherington for Adam in the 68th minute

The second change for Swansea soon followed as Luke Moore came on for Michu. But with just 16 minutes remaining, time was quickly running out for a comeback.

It was Stoke who nearly put the game to bed though 12 minutes from time when a rare missed pass from Britton saw Flores lose possession and Crouch headed Etherington's far post cross onto the top of the bar.

By that time, however, Stoke already had the victory, their first of the new season, in the bag.

 

STOKE CITY: Asmir Begovic, Geoff Cameron, Ryan Shawcross (c), Robert Huth, Marc Wilson, Jonathan Walters, Glenn Whelan (Dean Whitehead 81), Steven Nzonzi, Charlie Adam (Matthew Etherington 68), Michael Kightly, Peter Crouch (Kenwyne Jones 87).

SUBS: Thomas Sorensen, Michael Owen, Maurice Edu, Matt Upson.

SWANS: Michel Vorm, Angel Rangel, Ben Davies, Chico Flores, Ashley Williams (capt), Leon Britton, Ki Sung-Yueng, Michu (Luke Moore 75), Nathan Dyer, Pablo Hernandez (Wayne Routledge 62), Danny Graham.

SUBS: Gerhard Tremmel, Garry Monk, Jonathan de Guzman, Itay Shechter, Dwight Tiendalli.