Russell Martin | We need to be brave

1st April
First team
Team Huddle

Russell Martin has urged Swansea City to show courage and aggression, and embrace the challenge of handling the occasion in this afternoon’s south Wales derby at Cardiff City Stadium (3pm).

The Swans made the short trip down the M4 looking to become the first side to record four-straight wins in competitive fixtures between the sides, having become the first team to complete a league double in derby history last season.

They travel on the back of a morale-boosting victory over Bristol City last time out, and with an almost fully-fit squad with Joe Allen, Jay Fulton and Joel Latibeaudiere back in contention for selection.

Head coach Martin has spoken of the motivation to give a sold-out away end a derby day to remember, and he knows his players will need to find the right blend of aggression and accuracy to bring their best on the back of positives showings against Millwall and Bristol.

“Local derbies tend to take context out of the picture a little bit. That’s because of the emotion and the intensity of it,” said Martin.

“We’ve handled the occasions brilliantly in previous ones, which I think will help us in this one, for sure.

Russell Martin Bristol City

“It’s the balance between understanding the importance and being able to use that to your advantage.

“I am not going to say it’s about control, because I don’t think you have much control when you step over the white line, there’s so much going on.

“I think because of previous results we can go into it with much less fear than we could have.

“We’ll embrace it all, feel it all and most of all, enjoy it. I’m excited about it.

 “The guys made history last year. They did it again by winning three in a row at the start of this season.

“If it’s something that helps motivate the players, something they want to achieve again, then great, because they have a chance to make history again and do something that hasn’t been done.

“In football you don’t often get a chance to achieve those things.

“We want to win, not because it’s the double double or whatever that means, we want to win because we’re going away from home against our fierce rivals and we know how much it means to the city and supporters.”