Richards: We let ourselves down

20th December

Gary Richards admitted Swansea City Under-23s were second best as they exited the Premier League International Cup thanks to a 2-0 defeat against Athletic Bilbao B.

The young Swans needed to win the game to have any chance of progressing to the quarter-final of the competition and they had chances on goal through Adnan Maric and Jordan Garrick.

But a frantic final 10 minutes saw striker Inigo Vicente score twice before Swansea were reduced to nine with Maric and Garrick shown straight red cards.

The fiery defeat left under-23s coach Richards frustrated.

“It was a disappointing defeat and we let ourselves down,” he said. “The performance was not good enough.

“We didn’t pass the ball enough or create enough opportunities in front of goal. 

“We were quite passive with our play and gave them too many opportunities before getting involved in silly things which meant we ended up with nine players.

“If the boys want to be professional footballers, they can’t get sucked into things like that.

“We needed to get the ball down and pass it better because that’s how you deal with those frustrations. We need to be more professional, which we normally are.

“Assessing the season so far, we are pretty pleased with where we are in terms of development, results and league position. 

“That said, tonight’s performance makes it all the more disappointing. We’ll go into January in pretty good shape in the league, but we’re very disappointed with the way we’ve gone out of this cup.”