Monk praises "magnificent" team display

25th March

Garry Monk praised his side for their "magnificent" team performance after they battled to a 2-2 draw with Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium.

It was late drama in North London as Mathieu Flamini's 90th minute own goal earned the Swans a well-deserved point on their travels in the Barclays Premier League.

Monk's side got off to the perfect start as Wilfried Bony gave them a first-half lead when he powered home a header in the 11th minute.

But two goals in the space of 66 seconds, midway through the second period, changed the mood as Lukas Podolski volleyed in an equaliser before Olivier Giroud poked home to put the Gunners in front.

However, in the final minute of normal time, the Swans struck back when the ball ricocheted into the net off of Flamini after Leon Britton did superbly to bundle his way through on goal.

The point takes Monk's side five points clear of the drop zone, and the head coach was full of praise for his side's efforts.

"We showed what we can do tonight," said Monk. "We knew we would have to accept that we wouldn't have as much of the ball, coming to a place like this after their result on the weekend.

"We came here with a game plan, and it worked well.

"Unfortunately, during a two-minute period, we were punished heavily again, but we made sure we kept pushing them and didn't let our heads drop.

"The least we deserved was a point. I'm pleased for the players and also the fans, who have travelled all this way.

"If you'd have offered us a point before the game, we would have said yes. Every point is vital.

"It was vitally important we got the draw at the very least because it gives us that momentum.

"Hopefully we can take it into Norwich on Saturday and put on another performance like that."

Monk was also keen to praise the likes of Bony and Britton for their outstanding performances.

The Ivory Coast international led the line superbly, while Britton was as instrumental as ever at the heart of Swansea's midfield.

"Bony was magnificent," added the Swans head coach. "I thought he was a beast tonight.

"Sometimes you can see it in their eyes how much they want it, and he wanted it tonight.

"He put himself about and wanted to lead that team today.

"And Leon typifies what Swansea is all about. He was fantastic.

"The whole team were magnificent. My final words to them before they went out were to be together and to do it for each other.

"They did it to a man, and they were magnificent tonight."