Laudrup expecting tough test

3rd December 2013

Michael Laudrup is anticipating a difficult game when Newcastle United visit the Liberty Stadium on Wednesday night (7.45pm).

The Swans welcome Newcastle to SA1, hoping to bounce back from the 3-0 defeat they suffered at the hands of Manchester City on Sunday.

But it won't be straightforward for Laudrup's side as the Magpies travel to Swansea in good form, having recorded wins in their last four Barclays Premier League fixtures.

The Swans won both their home and away fixtures against Alan Pardew's side last season, but Laudrup is expecting a tougher test this time round.

"Tomorrow we will play a team who are on a very good run," said the Great Dane.

"They had a great year two seasons ago, arriving fifth. Last year, maybe with the Europa League, they struggled a bit, but this year they are back.

"They are a good, strong team with a lot of individual skills. It will be a good and tough test for us tomorrow evening.

"I'm not surprised by their results. If I look at their squad, I think they have a very good team.

"They have a good goalkeeper, a solid defence, very good midfielders - especially Cabaye, who is a player I really like - then they have pace, strength and goals up front.

"But now we have two home games, and we really hope we can get points here.

"Against Sunderland and West Ham, in two consecutive home games, we got four points. It would be nice to get at least four points from these two games to go from 15 points to 19.

And Laudrup, who confirmed that the likes of Michu, Wilfried Bony, Angel Rangel and Garry Monk would again be absent from tomorrow night's tie, was keen to express the faith he had in the rest of his squad.

He added: "When you have important players out, you always miss them, but I think the players, at least for the first 60 minutes [against Manchester City], played very good football.

"We still have the numbers that we need for a game. Even if we had 25 players, it's not that we have another Bony or another Michu on the bench as a reserve.

"We cannot have three or four players for a lot of millions on the bench.

"I think it's a false feeling when you have a lot of players. You think it's not a problem when you have four or five injuries, but it depends on who is injured.

"I prefer a smaller squad. If you have four or five regulars out of the side, you will always struggle, whether you are Swansea, Real Madrid, Barcelona or Chelsea.

"I have a lot of confidence in the rest of the players."