Russell Martin | Joel and Jay thoroughly deserved their chance

6th April 2022
First team
Millwall away Joel Latibeaudiere

Swansea City head coach Russell Martin hailed the contributions of Joel Latibeaudiere and Jay Fulton after the pair made their most of their recent chances to impress against Cardiff and Millwall.

With Ryan Manning suspended, Latibeaudiere slotted in at centre-half at Cardiff City Stadium and The Den, having impressed in a second-half showing against Birmingham before the international break.

The 22-year-old was superb in the wins over the Bluebirds and the Lions, helping the Swans keep two clean sheets and looking totally at ease in possession in tight spaces as Martin’s side dominated the ball.

Fulton, meanwhile, came off the bench to help seal the derby double at Cardiff, and then made a first start since early February against Millwall where he turned in a typically assured performance.

And, Swans boss Martin praised how the pair have continued to work hard for their opportunity, and ensured a high level of contribution in a lean squad.

“How good has Joel been? There was no way I could take him out of the side after the way he played on Saturday,” said Martin.

“He was great again in this game. He was really, really good.

Cardiff away Joel Latibeaudiere

“That is what we want to happen when someone comes out of the team. Ryan Manning has been outstanding for us this year, but his absence gave someone else an opportunity and we always tell the guys that if they perform well in games and in training they will keep the shirt.

“Everyone needs to produce every day, even the guys who are not in the squad or who are not playing. You have to be ready to push, and give your best so there is that competition and this is a brilliant group in that respect.

“Joel came in on Saturday in the toughest of occasions and dealt with it brilliantly, and he has done that again here.

“I am proud of him, and I am pleased for him. He is a great young man with a great attitude and willingness to work.

“It has not been as easy season for him because he has been asked to play in a different role a lot, but the way he has worked has been great.

“I am sure he will be desperate to play again on Saturday, although we will have to see how everyone recovers.

“But he absolutely deserved the chance to play again, as did Jay Fulton who did great coming back into the side and I felt he played the best he has for us.”

Millwall away Jay Fulton