Preview | Swansea City v Blackpool

15th February
First team Stadium under the lights

Swansea City look to return to winning ways and keep themselves in the hunt for the play-off places when they host Blackpool tonight (7.45pm).

Results on Tuesday meant the gap between the Swans and the top six opened up to eight points ahead of the meeting with the Seasiders. 

Head coach Russell Martin and captain Matt Grimes have spoken of the sequence of games between now and the March international break as being critical for Swansea’s hopes.

Nevertheless, they know they will face a Blackpool side fighting for their lives and four points adrift of safety with a third of the season to go.

But they have ground out valuable draws in recent weeks and are likely to prove obdurate opposition.

Sunderland away Joel Latibeaudiere

The Swans will make a late call on the availability of Joel Latibeaudiere as he recovers from the calf strain he picked up at Birmingham.

Goalkeeper Steven Benda is a long-term absentee but midfielders Joe Allen and Liam Walsh were back in the first-team squad following injury at Sheffield United.

Pre-match views

Russell Martin

Russell Martin:

“Blackpool are fighting for their lives, they picked up a point at the weekend.

“We are at home, we need to bounce back. Any game after two defeats is a big game, whatever situation you are in.

“It probably feels bigger than maybe it is because of everything that has gone on over the last couple of weeks.

“We now need to show character and more courage than we did after conceding at Sheffield United on the weekend.

“We have an extremely young squad, and that is where we are at. We have to keep building, keep trying to show courage and it’s a moment for us to really stand up and show what we are about.

“It’s a big month in terms of what the season will end up looking like, so we have to shake off the disappointment we have because we have an opportunity to build some momentum and put some points on the board ahead of the last 10 games.

“We either embrace that challenge and get excited about it or the season will meander into something we do not want.

“We have to make sure we stay in the hunt and keep trying to improve and build.”

Mick McCarthy:

"I've got so much to work with because I've got a really willing bunch of lads who are having a go - you could see that on Tuesday night and on Saturday.

"I'm pleased with the guys. If we scored from Josh Bowler's cross in the last minute, the feeling would have been so different. The result will have looked like a really good and positive one, but instead it ended up a draw and we all feel different about it.

"Despite that, I think we can take positives from the last two fixtures over the course of the next few matches as we look to get that all-important win."

Remember the last time?

Joel Piroe

Swansea City were denied a fifth home win in a row as Keshi Anderson's late goal ensured the spoils were shared on Blackpool’s last visit to the Stadium.

Joel Piroe looked to have settled the contest with a magnificent right-footed effort 10 minutes before the break, finding the top corner in emphatic fashion for his 11th goal of the season.

The Swans also saw Ethan Laird have two penalty appeals waved away, while Ben Hamer was largely unworked in goal until Anderson netted after a corner was only punched as far as the midfielder's feet.

Prime numbers

Joel Piroe and Liam Cullen celebrate

1 – The Swans have won just one of their last 10 games against Blackpool, with that solitary win coming at Bloomfield Road earlier this season.

11 – Between them, Joel Piroe and Liam Cullen have scored 11 goals in Swansea’s last eight Championship fixtures.