Preview | Norwich City v Swansea City
Swansea City head to Carrow Road this afternoon for an eagerly-anticipated meeting between two of the Championship’s form sides.
Norwich City are unbeaten in six games, while the Swans have not tasted defeat in five and boast an unbeaten away record in league games stretching back to February.
The Canaries had an uncertain start to life back in the second tier following their relegation at the end of last term but, since a defeat to Derby at the start of October, they have hit their stride.
Daniel Farke can also call upon a number of players who featured heavily when the East Anglia club won the Championship title in 2019.
The Swans, meanwhile, have suffered just one defeat, and have underlined a growing confidence and strength in depth in displays against Stoke, Blackburn and Brentford.
With both sides being committed to positive attacking play, it’s little wonder many consider this the game of the weekend in the Championship.
It promises to be an entertaining contest.
The Swans are waiting on the fitness of Ben Cabango as the defender nurses a hamstring problem.
The 20-year-old suffered the problem in the warm-up ahead of the midweek draw with Brentford, and had to withdraw from the starting line-up.
But Cooper has said he will give the Wales international as much time as possible to prove his fitness.
George Byers and Morgan Gibbs-White remain sidelined by injury.
Steve Cooper: “We know it will be a really tough test, they were in the Premier League last season and had a strong Championship campaign the year before.
“A lot of that structure and the coach are still in place, so a lot of that identity remains and they are a team that commit to that.
“So it will be a tough game, but I think it comes at a good time for us and we are really looking forward to going there and committing to the game.
“We will be ready for it, as these are the games you have got to look forward to.
“We don’t fear anybody. We embrace the challenges in front of us, even at the end of this really busy period.”
Daniel Farke: “It’s been a solid start. No doubt.
“We could be even better but sometimes you want the maximum in football and then you have to calm yourself down a bit.
“We have won some games in the last minutes as well, so you have to accept a draw when it comes along.
“When you work for such a club like this that stirs such emotions, and I like this to work with a club with a big history and emotion, it means every good or bad result feels bigger. It tells me how much everyone cares for this club and how big a role it is in their lives.
“But in my role I have to be level, to work with calmness and hopefully some class and humility.”
Remember the last time?
A stunning Emi Buendia strike condemned Swansea City to defeat at Norwich on their last visit to Carrow Road in March 2019.
Graham Potter’s Swans had the better of the first half against the Championship leaders and limited their hosts to a solitary shot on target in the entire game.
Unfortunately for the visitors, that proved to be the winner as Buendia lashed a left-footed drive into the net nine minutes into the second half.
It meant Swansea had lost four away games in a row, although Potter could take encouragement from the manner in which his side performed in such assured fashion against a Norwich side who had been in excellent freescoring form.
11 – Swansea City are now 11 away league games without defeat in the Championship, last losing on their travels at Fulham in February.
72 – The Swans have tasted victory at Carrow Road just once in 72 years. The sole win in that time was a 3-2 Championship win in 2008.
Today we welcome our virtual mascots, Carter Evans and Quinn Kerrane.
Carter is aged nine and comes from Bridgend. Carter plays football for Llan Rangers and his favourite player is Connor Roberts.
Quinn is aged seven, and will be watching us all the way from the USA. Quinn’s favourite player is Andre Ayew.