Preview: Swans v Stoke
19th January 2013
The Swans will be looking to get back to winning ways when they welcome Stoke to the Liberty Stadium on Saturday (3pm).
Michael Laudrup's side saw their seven-game unbeaten run come to an end last Wednesday following a 1-0 defeat against Arsenal in an FA Cup third round replay at the Emirates.
However, their form at the Liberty has been just as impressive, losing just twice in their last 17 games in all competitions on home soil.
And Saturday's game starts yet another busy week for the Swans as they face three games in seven days, including Wednesday's Capital One Cup semi-final second leg against Chelsea.
But Stoke arrive in south Wales sitting just one place behind the Swans, with two points separating the two sides.
Tony Pulis' men are in their fifth consecutive Premier League campaign, and overcame Crystal Palace in midweek to book their place in the fourth round of the FA Cup.
New signing Roland Lamah will be in the Swans squad, with Michael Laudrup expected to make a number of changes from the team that lost against Arsenal.
The only absentee is midfielder Kemy Agustien who has been ruled out for four weeks with an ankle problem.
Stoke have a doubt over the fitness of Andy Wilkinson, after the defender injured his back against Crystal Palace in midweek.
Charlie Adam and Asmir Begovic are set to return after being rested, while Ryan Shotton (hamstring) could return.
What they said
Swans boss Michael Laudrup: "Saturday's game is very important. It is a home game, which means we want to get three points and get closer to the 40-point mark. Then, when we arrive at that point, we can see how many games are left."
"We are at a very good level right now. There are 16 games to go and we still need to carry as we have been.
Stoke boss Tony Pulis: "Michael (Laudrup) has done a fantastic job there. He has a great knowledge of the Spanish league, and I think he's worked that oracle really well.
"He has impressed me with the way they have set themselves up and the way they have gone about their business."
Head to head
All three Premier League meetings between these two sides have ended as 2-0 home wins, the most recent of which came at the Britannia Stadium back in September.
The last ten matches between Swansea and Stoke have seen both sides win five games apiece.
Swansea have scored a lower proportion of goals from set-pieces than any other team this season (6.5%)
Michael Laudrup's men are unbeaten in their last five Premier League games, but four of those have been draws
They have not recorded back-to-back Premier League clean sheets since August, when they began the season with a 5-0 win at QPR and 3-0 victory over West Ham
Peter Crouch has scored in both of his Premier League appearances against Swansea at the Britannia Stadium, netting three in total
Stoke have mustered fewer shots on target this season than any team in the Premier League (69)
Tony Pulis' side have conceded as many goals in their last three Premier League games (10) as they did in the previous 15 top flight matches
32Red odds: Swans 13/11 Stoke 13/5 Draw 40/17