Gary Richards urges Swansea City U23s to learn defensive lessons

2nd September 2019
Gary Richards 16x7

Gary Richards says Swansea City Under-23s must heed costly defensive lessons after losing out in a seven-goal thriller against Stoke on Saturday.

The development side performed well with the ball, as they had done against Middlesbrough the previous week, with Oli Cooper, Tom Carroll and Liam Cullen on the scoresheet at the Liberty Stadium.

But they emerged with nothing to show for their efforts as Jake Dunwoody’s brace, plus a Declan John own goal and Daniel Jervis’ late strike gave the Potters the spoils.

And coach Richards was disappointed by the manner of the defeat.

“It was a hard one to take, having been 2-0 and 3-2 up,” he said.

“There were periods when we were very positive in possession and had good control of the match, so that makes it tough to have come away with nothing.

“We’ve been punished for not defending for the full 90 minutes.

Josh Gould

“We thought we played quite well in the first half, kept the ball well, produced some good combination play and created opportunities. We took two of them and felt we were in good shape.

“They threatened a little but there were a couple of occasions where we felt we could have defended better and we found ourselves going into the interval at 2-2, which we didn’t feel we deserved.

“It was hard to take that we conceded two poor goals. But that’s what you get when you don’t defend well.

“Although we gifted them an opportunity in the opening minute of the second half, we started well again and got back in front.

“We then had a good period of possession and kept the ball well during the first period of the second half.

Cameron Evans

“But then it became more of a basketball game in the second period, and perhaps we could have managed that better than what we did.

“The boys have endured tough lessons here and against Middlesbrough. Our performance levels for most of the games have been good, but we’ve come away with nothing.”