Report | Swansea City 0 Barnsley 0

29th December 2019
First team
Barnsley Sam Surridge

Swansea City were held to a goalless draw by Barnsley as they rounded off 2019 at the Liberty Stadium.

After a slow start, Steve Cooper’s side grew into the contest but their best chances saw Sam Surridge hit the bar from distance, while Andre Ayew had a header saved from point-blank range.

The visitors also struck the woodwork, Jacob Brown failing to convert from inside the six-yard box early in the second half as the points were shared.

Cooper had made two changes from the defeat at Brentford as Kyle Naughton and Jay Fulton came in for Connor Roberts and George Byers respectively.

Mike van der Hoorn remained sidelined with the knee problem he picked up in the warm-up at Brentford.

It was a sluggish start from the Swans, but they did rouse themselves to put together a decent attack in the 11th minute, which was sparked by Bersant Celina and ended with Tom Carroll’s cross just being plucked out of the air before Surridge could pounce.

It took another 10 minutes for another glimpse of some fluency, as an Ayew flick threatened to send Surridge in on goal.

Barnsley Andre Ayew

Barnsley thought they had taken the lead when Conor Chaplin’s deflected strike was ruled out for offside after bouncing beyond Freddie Woodman.

The Swans should have led on the half-hour. Firstly, Celina saw his pull-back cut out with Ayew waiting, while the Kosovo international’s follow-up ball saw an unmarked Surridge prod straight at Samuel Radlinger in the Barnsley goal.

The striker then clipped the bar after Carroll had cushioned a poor Radlinger clearance to him some 30 yards.

His strike beat the retreating keeper, but not the woodwork and it proved to be as close as the hosts came to finding the net during a goalless opening half.

Neither side made any changes at the break, but Barnsley started the second half brightly, putting pressure on the Swans and penning Cooper’s men back.

They should have led seven minutes after the restart. Swansea were caught napping after a clearance, and Brown somehow only managed to steer the ball against the post from point-blank range.

Swansea hit back, Jake Bidwell standing up a lovely cross that Surridge headed at Radlinger.

Barnsley Sam Surridge

Ayew was then denied by the keeper from a Matt Grimes header, but Celina then skied the follow-up over the bar.

Surridge found the net but was rightly brought back for offside from Ayew’s through ball, before Celina saw another low cross cut out from a promising position.

Swansea frustrations only increased as an attempted short-corner routine saw substitute Byers caught offside from the return pass with time running out for a winner.

Byers then steered wide from a clever Naughton pull-back before fellow sub Wayne Routledge was adjudged offside as he chased down a Grimes pass.

Celina’s awkward bouncing shot was parried by Radlinger but no white shirt was close enough to convert the loose ball as the game ended scoreless.

Swansea City: Freddie Woodman; Kyle Naughton, Ben Wilmot, Ben Cabango, Jake Bidwell; Jay Fulton, Matt Grimes (captain), Tom Carroll (George Byers 70); Andre Ayew, Sam Surridge (Wayne Routledge 77), Bersant Celina.

Substitutes: Kristoffer Nordfeldt, Connor Roberts, Declan John, Barrie McKay, Borja.

Barnsley: Samuel Radlinger, Jordan Williams, Bambo Diaby, Mads Andersen, Jacob Brown (Patrick Schmidt 61), Cauley Woodrow, Conor Chaplin, Luke Thomas, Clarke Odour, Aapo Halme, Alex Mowatt (captain) (Mike Bahre 61).

Substitutes: Kenny Dougall, Callum Styles, Toby Sibbick, Elliot Simoes, Brad Collins.

Referee: Antony Coggins

Attendance: 17,097