Joel Latibeaudiere | We showed how we have grown this season
Joel Latibeaudiere hailed his Swansea City team-mates’ character as they put in a professional performance at Carrow Road to seal an emphatic 3-0 victory against ten-man Norwich City.
The defender opened the scoring with a headed goal from Ryan Manning’s corner in the 23rd minute, and Manning was the provider again 15 minutes later when he stood the ball up for Liam Cullen to head in at the back post.
Sam McCallum’s red card for bringing down Cullen with the striker in on goal saw the home side reduced to 10, and the Swans showed composure and patience to break them down a final time as Olivier Ntcham was sent through to slot in a third.
It was an excellent display from Russell Martin’s young side, which took their unbeaten run to seven games and earned them four wins in a row for the second time this season.
And Latibeaudiere believes it was a result which demonstrates the progress the side have made this season.
“I think we started the game a bit slowly, but that’s maybe understandable with two days travelling,” Latibeaudiere said.
“But once we got into the game, we got the first goal which was important and then when they got a man sent off, we knew we could capitalise on that.
“We prefer it when a team comes and presses us because we can look to bop it around them and get Joel Piroe, Luke Cundle, Culls, Morgan Whittaker, Olivier Ntcham - all of those players - on the ball and turned, so when they sit off it makes it more difficult.
“When they’ve got 10 men, it’s just about sticking to principles, making sure we don’t get sloppy and we showed that character.
“I feel like at the start of the season we might not have been able to get that kind of result, so it shows real growth in the team and our mentality.
“The third goal is one of the best we’ve scored this season. Ntcham has just come into his own recently and it’s great to see.
“We showed great character after that to stick to our principles and not allow the game to get away from us. I think that showed how far we’ve come this season.”
For Latibeaudiere, it was his second goal of the season and he was pleased to play his part in helping the side to nine points from a three-game-week, with two of those matches coming against play-off hopefuls.
“It was a corner meant for Cully [Liam Cullen] at the back post,” he said of his goal.
“Rhino [Manning] has put it in, and I’ve just seen it coming towards me so I thought, ‘nah, I’m going to have a go’ and then I jumped up and headed it in.
“I’ve scored two now, but I’m usually the guy causing chaos in the box to free up Benny [Cabango] and Nath [Wood].
“Four wins in a row is great, as is a nine-point week, which is massive in the Championship so the boys are buzzing.
“We just want to finish the season well now, for us and for the travelling fans. Thanks to them for showing up again. Let’s just finish this season on a positive.”