Bob Bradley: Swansea City must put run together
15th December 2016
Bob Bradley has challenged his Swansea City players to kick off a run of positive results in their "massive" clash with Middlesbrough this weekend.
The Swans head to Teesside looking to make amends for Wednesday night's disappointing loss at West Brom, which left them 18th in the table ahead of their final pre-Christmas fixture.
Bradley's side impressed in the first 45 minutes at The Hawthorns, but their hopes of building on last Saturday's victory over Sunderland disappeared during a 13-minute spell at the start of the second half in which Salomon Rondon scored three times.
Now the Swans must put the Albion reverse to one side as they take on a Boro team who are currently one place above them in the Premier League.
"You look at the table and games against teams that are closer to you do take on more importance," Bradley said.
"But I think we can all agree that every game is massive for us right now.
"We understand that the start to the season we have had and the league position we are in make it extra important every time we step on to the field.
"If we can put a little bit of a run together at some point, then all of a sudden we would be out of the bottom three.
"The disappointment of West Brom was that we were not able to build on our win against Sunderland, but now we have to try to start a good run again."
The West Brom defeat means the Swans have taken just one point from seven away league games since their opening-day victory at Burnley.
A first travelling triumph under Bradley would be a huge boost ahead of festive home fixtures against West Ham and Bournemouth.
But Bradley acknowledges that nothing will come easy against Middlesbrough, who have made a decent start to life back in the top tier having won automatic promotion from the Championship last season.
"I have watched Middlesbrough a number of times," he added.
"I think they are a good team and that Aitor Karanka has done a good job.
"I am very familiar with Alvaro Negredo thanks to one of the friendly matches between the US and Spain when he played very well.
"He is capable of being a real presence up front, and Middlesbrough have some good footballers in their team."
The Swans are again likely to be without Federico Fernandez and Ki Sung-Yueng at the Riverside, with both players continuing their recoveries from toe injuries.
But there are not thought to be any fresh fitness concerns for Bradley in the wake of West Brom.