Preview | Swansea City v Fulham
Swansea City will look to record three consecutive league wins for the first time this season when they host Fulham at the Swansea.com Stadium on Tuesday evening (7.45pm).
The Championship leaders arrive in SA1 having only failed to win two league games in 2022.
The home side will take confidence from a fantastic result against West Bromwich Albion eight days ago and a near-perfect first half performance against Coventry City last time out when they dominated possession and reduced the visitors to a solitary chance.
The Cottagers will provide a much tougher test, however, and they won the reverse fixture 3-1 thanks to a first-half hat-trick from top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic.
Fulham’s form since the turn of the year has put them in pole position for the title with an 11-point lead at the top of the table.
Hannes Wolf remains out of the squad due to Covid-19, while Cyrus Christie will be unavailable due to the terms of his loan agreement which prevent him from facing his parent club.
The game comes too soon for Nathanael Ogbeta, however, who returned to the grass last week after a hamstring injury.
Russell Martin: “Even with the two results we’ve had, they’ll be no expectation outside this building for us to get any result against Fulham because of the form they’re in and the quality they possess.
“I think it’s a brilliant opportunity for the guys to really show where they are at and how good they can be.
“I loved our performance at Craven Cottage earlier in the season. I was probably happier with that performance than I was with the performance [against Coventry City] on Saturday.
“If we can replicate something like that and play with that intensity, we’ll have a chance of surprising people."
Marco Silva: “They’re a team that like to have possession. I think they’re the team with the most possession in this competition.
“Their game is to play out from the goalkeeper, they have enough courage to do it, and they do it with quality. I think the game we played against them at the Cottage is a good example of that.
“I think maybe they were the only team that had more possession than us at the Cottage. That shows the way they like to play.
“We have to press really high to try to get the ball from them, and we will do it in certain moments. Other moments, we have to control in a different way, and I think that will be a good challenge for us.”
Remember the last time?
A first-half brace from Mitrovic sealed defeat for the Swans when they last hosted Fulham in November 2019.
Steve Cooper’s men were unfortunate to be on the losing side that day playing the better football and creating the majority of chances. But the Serbian international was clinical and he headed in a rebound after Aboubaka Kamara’s volley clattered the crossbar, before calmly finishing off a move orchestrated by Josh Onomah.
The Swans continued to press, but found visiting goalkeeper Marek Rodak in fine form. They got a well-deserved goal back just after the hour mark when George Byers headed in from Barrie McKay’s cross, but they were unable to find the equaliser as the visitors held on for the points.
34 – It would be remis not to mention Mitrovic’s record-setting goal tally. He’s already broken the goal scoring record for the Championship and shows no sign of slowing down with 12 games remaining. He is yet to go more than two league games without a goal and is currently averaging 1.09 goals per game.
68 – It’s a familiar fixture with the sides meeting 68 times across 97 years. The Cottagers hold the advantage coming out on top on 34 occasions.