Preview | Coventry City v Swansea City

17th December 2022
First team
CBS Arena

Swansea City and Coventry City will be seeking to bounce back when they face off this afternoon at the CBS Arena (3pm), after the two teams restarted their Championship campaigns with defeats last time out.

The Swans were beaten 1-0 by Norwich at the Stadium, paying the price for a slow start as Teemu Pukki's early goal proved the difference in a game Russell Martin's side had the better off without being able to find an equaliser.

The Sky Blues, meanwhile, were beaten 1-0 at Reading, bringing an end to their run of four wins in a row.

Nevertheless, the two sides remain firmly in the play-off picture; Swansea are just three points off the play-off places, while Coventry are five adrift but with two games in hand on the majority of clubs above them.

Team news

Michael Obafemi representing Ireland

The Swans are waiting on the fitness of Michael Obafemi but have no other injury concerns ahead of the trip to Coventry.

The striker picked up a knock on international duty and will be monitored ahead of kick-off.

All four members of Swansea's World Cup contingent came through unscathed as Ben Cabango, Joe Allen, Ollie Cooper and Olivier Ntcham featured against Norwich.

There was also the welcome sight of Jamie Paterson getting over an hour under his belt following an injury-affected opening to the campaign.

Pre-match views

Russell Martin: "They are a threat in this division, they are almost in a false position.

"I have so much respect for Mark Robins, Adi (Viveash) and Dennis (Lawrence). We love them as a group of people and a coaching staff.

"They have always been great with us, we played against them in League One at MK Dons when they had a brilliant team and were on the way to getting promoted.

"What they have done to establish themselves as a really good Championship team, despite all the stuff they have had to deal with off the pitch during the time they have been there, is incredible.

"So we have tremendous respect for them. We always knew at some point they would climb up the table and they have put themselves in a good position.

"It’s going to be a good game, it’s two teams in similar positions. They are in brilliant form, we are in frustrating form because performances have been good and results have not reflected that.

"We look forward to it, hopefully we can perform as we did at their place last season, or at home, because we did very well in both games against them last season. Hopefully we can do the same again."

Mark Robins: “They played last week against a really good Norwich team, and they ran them close, and they had plenty of chances and they moved the ball really well.

“It will be an interesting game, but it’s one I know we can do some damage in. Last season when we played them, we didn’t start the game quickly enough and from that point of view you give them the impetus and Norwich got at them last week and they gained the initiative taking the lead early on.

“They don’t stop doing what they are doing, and they get into spaces and try and pin you deep and they try and get the ball high up the field because that’s where they’re most comfortable and that’s where they want you, and we have to try do things to counter that.

“They’ve got good players. Joel Piroe is a really good striker who drops into spaces well and when he gets the chances to shoot, he does and hits the target a lot.

“Matt Grimes in the middle with Jay Fulton, they have forged a good partnership and they have some good attacking players, and they will always try and play and move you around and we have to try and limit the opportunities they get.”

Remember the last time?

Swansea City ended Coventry’s unbeaten home record and secured a second away victory of the 2021-22 season thanks to a fast start on their last visit to the CBS Arena 13 months ago.

Goals inside the opening 12 minutes from Jamie Paterson and Joel Piroe – the latter registering his 10th goal of the season – had Russell Martin’s side in command as they came out of the blocks sharply.

But the Sky Blues underlined why they had enjoyed such an impressive start to the campaign by hitting back through a Kyle McFadzean header during an entertaining and absorbing opening half.

The game became a rather more tense affair after the break but, while Coventry pushed for a leveller, it was hard to recall the Swans defence having to deal with any real moments of panic.

The win moved the visitors into the top half of the table and within one point of the play-off places.

Prime numbers

Coventry Home Paterson

12 - The Swans and Sky Blues have proven evenly-matched over the years, with the sides each taking 12 wins and nine draws apiece from 33 meetings dating back to 1915.

13 - The Swans are unbeaten in their last 13 meetings with the Sky Blues, last suffering defeat to them in October 1981.