FULL-TIME: FC Gravenzande 0 Swans 2
6th July 2013
The Swans started their tour of Holland on a winning note as goals in either half from Ki Sung-Yueng and Pablo Hernandez were enough to beat amateur side FC Gravenzande 2-0 at Juliana Sportpark.
Michael Laudrup named virtually two different sides for each half as the players got the first minutes under their belts in glorious conditions here in South Holland.
Ki bagged his first goal since joining the Swans last summer as he tapped home after Nathan Dyer's effort hit the post in the 39th minute.
Laudrup's side, as expected, dominated the game against the fourth-tier Dutch hosts, who gave a good account of themselves.
Wayne Routledge, Rory Donnelly and new signing Alejandro Pozuelo all went close in the first half, before Laudrup made ten changes for the second half.
In the second 45 minutes, Roland Lamah and Pozuelo went close to adding to the lead, but it was the latter's pass which sent Hernandez in on goal and the Spaniard made no mistake with eight minutes to go.
The Swans now face Excelsior Maassluis - from a tier above Gravenzande - on Sunday in their second game of the tour with Michu - the only absentee from today's squad - hopeful of appearing after missing out with a tight quad.
FC GRAVENZANDE: Danny Koning, Jeffrey van den Bos, Frank de Bruijn, Jasper van Dijk, Dennis van Dijk, Mark Haaring, Domingos Lopes de Brito, Roy Vormolen, Yuri Westhoff, Sander Koeleman, Michiel van der Berg.
SUBS: Keke Stam, Ben Klop, Sevy Claudio, Frank Broos, Robin van de Broek, Twan van Meerten, Vincent Madern.
SWANS (first half): Gerhard Tremmel, Jazz Richards, Chico Flores, Ashley Williams (capt), Neil Taylor, Leon Britton, Ki Sung-Yueng, Alejandro Pozuelo, Nathan Dyer, Wayne Routledge, Rory Donnelly.
SWANS (second half): Gregor Zabret, Angel Rangel, Garry Monk (capt), Jordi Amat, Ben Davies, Jose Canas, Jonjo Shelvey, Kenji Gorre, Pablo Hernandez, Roland Lamah, Rory Donnelly (Alejandro Pozuelo, 76).
The Swans quickly settled into the game, enjoying the majority of possession and territory.
And they carved open the first chance of the game after four minutes. Nathan Dyer's quickly-taken free-kick found Neil Taylor, and when his pass reached new signing Alejandro Pozuelo, the Spaniard's neat touch gave Ki Sung-Yueng a chance to test Danny Koning, but he curled his effort straight into the keeper's hands.
The Korean was at the heart of the next big opportunity, as he met Jazz Richards' curling cross into the box, but Ki could only steer his header straight at Koning from eight yards out.
Michael Laudrup's side continued their passing game in extremely warm conditions, and after Wayne Routledge blazed over following Leon Britton's interception and neat pass, the game was halted for a short drinks break with 23 minutes on the clock.
Fully refreshed, the Swans almost took the lead a minute later as Rory Donnelly latched onto Routledge's through ball, but keeper Koning steered his shot from an acute angle out for a corner.
From the resulting delivery, Ashley Williams rose highest but saw his header fly past the far post.
The Swans kept probing, and Routledge went the closest so far as a sublime one-two with Pozuelo sent the winger in on goal, but Routledge's shot beat the keeper but not the far post.
Pozuelo then drew a save from Koning as the game entered the half-hour mark.
Donnelly then test Koning again before the hosts' Sander Koeleman fired a powerful goal-bound volley but Williams deflected it wide with a brave header.
Then, with 39 minutes on the clock, the Swans finally took the lead with a flowing move from Gravenzande's corner.
Tremmel collected and rolled forward to Ki, and he knocked left to Nathan Dyer, who's one-two with Routledge put him in on goal. But when Dyer's effort rebounded off the post straight to Ki, the Korean tapped home for his first goal since moving to the Swans.
Half-time: FC Gravenzande 0 Swans 1
Laudrup made ten chances for the second half, with Gregor Zabret, Jori Amat, Jose Canas and Jonjo Shelvey all getting their first minutes since joining this summer.
And Shelvey was straight into the action, firing over from 20 yards within two minutes of the restart.
The midfielder's next involvement came 60 seconds later, his sublime crossfield pass catching the home defence off guard, but Angel Rangel was just beaten to the ball by the keeper.
Dutch youngster Kenji Gorre then drove a 20-yard shot over before Donnelly's header from Roland Lamah's cross was spilled by the home keeper as the game moved towards the hour mark.
With the sun beaming down, the referee ordered another drinks break with 20 minutes to go, allowing both teams to replenish.
Youngster Donnelly was replaced for the final 15 minutes, with Pozuelo taking his place.
And the Spaniard had a great opportunity to score his first Swans goal just 60 seconds after returning to the action, but he drilled wide of the far post after Lamah picked him out at the back post.
He probed again soon after, but his curling side-footed shot fell the wrong side of the post.
But the Swans did double their lead in the 82nd minute. Shelvey did well to win possession in midfield, and he touched on to Pozuelo, whose pass sent Hernandez in on goal with home defence caught flat-footed near the harfway line.
And the Spanish international slotted past the keeper with a cool finish.
It was almost 3-0 a minute later, as Lamah and Gorre linked up before teeing up Pozuelo, but his chip was just off target.
Lamah's fine left-footed strike then demanded a fine one-handed save from the keeper, with the game in the final moments.
And that was the end of the action as the Swans picked up a useful win which will serve them well as the tour continues.