On this day: The biggest win of all?

3rd May 2018
Club

Swansea City brushed off tension and nerves to secure arguably their most important victory of all on this day in 2003.

It was 2003, and the final day of the Division Three season.

It had been a torrid year for the Swans, who sank to the bottom of the Football League for the first time in their history in the early stages of the campaign and would be in and around the danger zone throughout the campaign.

Nick Cusack was manager at the start of 2002-03, and he built a squad on a small budget which was packed with players who had been cast off by other clubs.

It soon became apparent that the group of players was not good enough to compete.

Cusack departed after defeat at Boston in September 2002 and was quickly replaced by the former Wrexham manager Brian Flynn.

The new man at the top quickly set about rebuilding the Swans squad, with the likes of Alan Tate (Manchester United), Marc Richards (Blackburn) and Leon Britton (West Ham) arriving on loan.

Flynn also signed a number of more experienced players, like Kevin Nugent, Lenny Johnrose and Roberto Martinez.

The new faces would all play their part in the fight against relegation to non-league football.

It was no smooth ride. Even under Flynn, the Swans suffered some miserable results, including a 4-0 home loss to Kidderminster. There was a run of six successive league losses over Christmas and New Year which left the Swans looking doomed.

Yet Flynn's men fought back, winning four of their next six games to give themselves a survival chance.

Yet after a home loss to relegation rivals Exeter on Easter Monday, the Swans looked close to doomed.

Then came a gutsy 2-1 win at Rochdale which meant victory over Hull at the Vetch would see the Swans survive.

Typically, it was not easy. After James Thomas's early penalty, two defensive mistakes saw Hull go 2-1 up.

But a second Thomas penalty meant it was level at the break, and Johnrose's goal early in the second half eased home nerves a little.

When Thomas chipped a brilliant fourth just before the hour, the job was done. 

The Swans had survived.