Paul Clement: Swansea City must seize Leicester chance
9th February 2017
Paul Clement has urged Swansea City to seize the chance to strike a blow in the Premier League relegation fight when they host Leicester City on Sunday.
Only goal difference separates the Swans, who are one spot above the drop zone, and 16th-placed Leicester heading into the weekend.
Clement's men have built up some momentum in recent weeks, and even that cruel defeat at Manchester City last time out has not damaged the growing feeling of optimism in the Liberty dressing room.
Leicester, meantime, have dropped into the survival scrap having won only of their last nine top-flight matches.
Clement has insisted that with just 14 league fixtures ahead this season, every game is key for his team.
But he accepts that Leicester's visit to SA1 offers his players the chance to give themselves a major lift.
"The two teams are level on points and we will not play each other again this season, so that adds an extra spice to the fixture," said the Swans head coach.
"Even though we didn't get anything from our game last week, we go into this game with a lot of confidence and a belief that we are going in the right direction.
"We are at home, which is a clear advantage, so we need to make use of that.
"I think psychologically, if we get the victory and a good performance, that would be a big boost for us, particularly after the difficult result we had at Manchester City.
"And certainly, we are going to be doing our very best to win the game on Sunday."
Clement revealed Ki Sung-Yueng will miss the Leicester clash with a knee injury which could rule him out for between three and four weeks.
Leon Britton has also missed some training this week, although the Swans are hopeful that their skipper will be fit to play some part, while Jefferson Montero (hamstring) remains sidelined.
Jordan Ayew is set to feature having arrived in Wales on Wednesday following his deadline-day move from Aston Villa.
"Jordan is in good shape," Clement added.
"He joined in training this morning, he is ready to go and he will be involved on Sunday, although I haven't decided on the team yet.
"His fitness is fine. It's more about getting the information into him that he needs to go out and do his job."
The Swans are not the only side at the bottom end of the table who have found some form in recent weeks.
And Clement reckons the race to stay up is wide open at this stage.
"There will not be a team in that region of the table who don't think they can do it," he said.
"The points are so tight at the moment, from the bottom three to 17th or 16th and maybe even a little higher than that.
"We will know how the other results have gone this weekend by the time we play, but the most important thing is that after a full week on the training ground and in the video room, we will be well prepared for this game.
"We need to make use of that if we can."
Clement on Manchester City
"It was a very good performance from us, particularly in the second half.
"We were very close to getting an extremely valuable point and we were all desperately disappointed afterwards.
"It wasn't to be, but we can still draw a lot of positives from our performance."
Clement on Claudio Ranieri
"He was a good manager before he got to Leicester, having worked at a number of clubs including Chelsea and Inter Milan, but what he did last season was truly remarkable.
"He is tactically very good. He made Leicester so mentally tough during the run-in last season. He did an amazing job and he deserves time to turn things around now."
Clement on Nathan Dyer's insider knowledge of Leicester
"I have had a discussion with Nathan already about Leicester. It would have been silly of me not to have asked him about some particular things.
"He was very good. He is a bright young man and I enjoyed sitting down with him for 10 or 15 minutes, talking not only about last year but about his own development."
Clement on the points needed to survive
"I have seen in the past that a team have gone down with 43 points, while a team have stayed up with 36.
"It could be anything in between those figures, but we just think about the next game."