Clement: We will be ready at Southampton
Paul Clement believes Swansea City are primed for Premier League action at Southampton next weekend after a thumping 4-0 win over Sampdoria.
The Swans have made steady progress throughout pre-season and delivered their most impressive performance yet as they cruised to victory over the club who finished 11th in Serie A last season.
Leroy Fer put the Swans in front five minutes before half-time, heading home from Tom Carroll’s free-kick.
The home side double their lead thanks to a freak own goal right at the start of the second period, when Ricky Alvarez’s backpass evaded Sampdoria keeper Andrea Tozzo and rolled into the net.
Tammy Abraham netted the Swans’ third, bundling home at the back post from Carroll’s centre.
And Carroll claimed another assist 14 minutes from time as his corner was headed in by Federico Fernandez.
Clement felt his team’s convincing victory was a fine way to finish preparations for the new top-flight campaign.
“I am really happy with the way things have gone in pre-season,” the Swans manager said.
“We have worked hard and we have improved after making a slow start, which can happen.
“We got a lot of work in while we were in America without really playing at our best.
“We then did some good things last week against Birmingham and today we played a really good side who were only narrowly beaten by Manchester United the other night.
“I know they made a lot of changes today, and perhaps the second goal was the sort of gift you don’t normally expect.
“But we were dangerous on the counter-attack in the first half, we scored from two set-plays and we got a little bit more control of the game in the second half.
“There are still a couple of things to work on, but I am confident that by next Saturday, we will be ready.”
The Swans have won three of their six pre-season friendlies, with their sole defeat coming in their first summer run-out at Barnet last month.
And Clement is content with the way things have gone as he attempts to carry the momentum his team built at the end of last season into 2017-18.
“That’s pre-season done. We have tried to work on things we felt we needed to improve and there will be things from this game that I think we need to address before Southampton,” he added.
“We will also have an in-depth look at Southampton, and then we will be ready to go next Saturday at 3pm. It’s exciting for us.”
Gylfi Sigurdsson was once again omitted from Clement’s matchday squad amid continued speculation about his future.
When asked about the Icelander, Clement said: “I know that’s a big talking point, but I am focused on the players who are committed to being here, who want to work and want to improve and I am happy with their performance today.
“On the subject you’re asking about, there is no further update.”