Monk expecting "tough" test at Villa Park
19th March 2015
Garry Monk is anticipating a "tough" test this weekend as Swansea City face a rejuvenated Aston Villa (3pm).
The Swans travel to Villa Park on the back of a narrow defeat against in-form Liverpool on Monday, and they face a Villa side who have picked up in recent weeks under new boss Tim Sherwood.
Back-to-back league wins over West Brom and Sunderland have moved Villa out of the relegation zone, while the Midlands side also booked their place in the semi-final of the FA Cup a fortnight ago.
And Garry Monk is expecting another stiff test when he takes his side to Villa Park on Saturday.
"He (Sherwood) has gone in there and lifted the confidence," he said. "They have very good players there but they weren't playing to full potential before.
"Tim is an honest guy in the way he approaches games and Villa have picked up in recent weeks and we're expecting a really tough game this weekend.
"Their priority I'm sure is to stay in the Premier League. Of course cup games are always nice to look forward to, but that can breed confidence too.
"But we've got our own targets and what we want to achieve in the remaining games this season. The next target is to beat 47 points, Saturday is another challenge and we want to get more points on the board."
Having reached the coveted 40-point park at the end of last month, Swansea have enjoyed another positive campaign in the Premier League.
Monk's men have been in the top half of the table since the opening day of the season, and the Swans boss is already looking ahead.
"We are always trying to consistently push the team forward and evolve the squad," he said. "That is a constant process and I've got areas that I'd like to improve and the Chairman is well aware of that.
"The process right now is to build again for next year."
Meanwhile, Monk confirmed that Federico Fernandez is back in the squad for Saturday's trip to Villa Park after the defender missed the defeat against Liverpool due to family reasons.
Supporters are reminded that there are still tickets on sale for the trip to Villa Park.
Tickets can be purchased online, in-person at the Ticket Office or by calling 0844 815 6665.
Tickets will go off sale at 4pm on Friday (March 20).