FULL-TIME: Aston Villa 0 Swans 1
21st March 2015
Bafe Gomis' late winner fired the Swans to eighth in the Barclays Premier League with a 1-0 victory at Aston Villa.
Garry Monk's side had a host of chances throughout the 90 minutes as Gomis was twice denied by Brad Guzan, while Wayne Routledge saw an effort cleared off the line by Ciaran Clark.
But the French striker scored with just three minutes left on the clock, sliding home from substitute Jefferson Montero's delightful pass across the box, to secure maximum points for Monk's men.
The win takes the Swans to 43 points in the Premier League, moving them above Stoke into eighth position with eight games remaining.
The Swans make one change to their starting XI for today's game at Aston Villa.
Federico Fernandez returns to Garry Monk's plans after missing the home defeat to Liverpool for family reasons. That means Jordi Amat, who celebrates his 23rd birthday today, is among the substitutes.
The other change sees Leon Britton miss out with a back spasm, with his place being taken by youngster Jay Fulton.
Villa see Alan Hutton return following suspension but defenders Ron Vlaar, Aly Cissoko, Philippe Senderos, Nathan Baker and Kieran Richardson all remain sidelined.
Former Swans winger Scott Sinclair, now on loan at Villa, starts against his former club.
ASTON VILLA: Brad Guzan, Alan Hutton, Jores Okore, Ciaran Clark, Leandro Bacuna, Fabian Delph (capt), Tom Cleverley (Carlos Sanchez, 25), Charles N'Zogbia (Ashley Westwood, 68), Scott Sinclair, Christian Benteke (Andreas Weimann (75), Gabriel Agbonlahor.
SUBS: Shay Given, Carles Gil, Jack Grealish, Lewis Kinsella.
SWANS: Lukasz Fabianski, Kyle Naughton, Federico Fernandez, Ashley Williams (capt), Neil Taylor, Jack Cork, Ki Sung-Yueng, Jonjo Shelvey (Nathan Dyer, 85), Gylfi Sigurdsson (Jefferson Montero, 63), Wayne Routledge, Bafe Gomis.
SUBS: Gerhard Tremmel, Angel Rangel, Jordi Amat, Jay Fulton, Nelson Oliveira.
After a bright start to proceedings, the Swans had a glorious chance to take the lead inside five minutes as Brad Guzan denied Bafe Gomis from close range. Following a neat through ball by Gylfi Sigurdsson, Neil Taylor pulled the ball back for the French striker, who hit straight at Guzan from six yards.
Two minutes later, Garry Monk's side had the ball in the net when Wayne Routledge lobbed the Aston Villa shot stopper from 18 yards, only to see the linesman's flag raised for offside.
Midway through the first period, Guzan was once again on hand to deny Gomis, whose drilled effort from inside the box was turned around the post, before Lukasz Fabianski held on to a rasping strike by Fabian Delph at the other end.
With ten minutes to play before the interval, the hosts yet again went close to falling behind when Ciaran Clark cleared Routledge's low strike off the line after Villa failed to clear Sigurdsson's corner.
But despite the Swans boasting the better of the first-half chances, it remained goalless at the midway point.
HALF-TIME: Swans 0 Aston Villa 0
Shortly after the restart, Guzan once again had to have his wits about him to tip over Sigurdsson's dipping 25-yard free-kick, before Gomis headed over the bar after a succession of corners.
Meanwhile, at the other end, a superb block by Taylor denied an all but certain goal as his last-ditch challenge denied Villa striker Gabby Agbonlahor the elusive opener.
In an effort to break the deadlock, Swans boss Monk introduced Jefferson Montero into the fray, who almost made an instant impact. Darting down the left flank in typical fashion, the Ecuadorian winger cut back for Gomis, whose first-time shot deflected over the bar.
But after Fabianski was called into action to prevent former Swan Scott Sinclair from finding the net, the Swans finally broke the deadlock as Gomis hit home from Montero's fine pass across the box.
Sinclair then went whiskers away from scoring a late equaliser, only to see his thunderous volley fly just over the bar, before Guzan denied Routledge one-on-one after the Swans broke on the counter.