Swans v Preston: The big talking points

10th August 2018
First team

Swansea City take on Preston North End this weekend in their opening home fixture of the new season.

Here are all the key talking points heading into the game.

 

Potter’s Liberty debut

The Graham Potter era began in style at Sheffield United last weekend as the Swans scored twice in the final quarter to give their new manager a comeback victory in his first competitive game in charge.

It was a fabulous start for Potter, particularly when you consider that before last Saturday, the Swans had not won a league game at Bramall Lane since 1939.

Now the challenge is to build on that success in Potter’s maiden home fixture.

Should his team find a way to overcome Preston, Potter will become the first Swans boss since Michael Laudrup to secure victories in his first two games at the helm.

 

New faces in SA1

Four summer recruits made Swans debuts in South Yorkshire, and all four of them made positive contributions.

Now Joel Asoro – who is set to be fit despite a midweek injury scare – Bersant Celina, Barrie McKay and Bramall Lane matchwinner Yan Dhanda will hope to run out at the Liberty for the first time.

The quartet were part of a positive Swans attacking display last weekend, particularly in the second half.

Potter will look for more of the same from his new recruits tomorrow – as well as striker Oli McBurnie.

 

Preston impress

Like the Swans, Preston will be looking to make it two wins from two this season on Saturday afternoon.

They kicked off the new campaign with a 1-0 home victory over Queens Park Rangers, and they have bolstered their squad this week with the loan signings of Manchester City duo Brandon Barker, a winger, and Lukas Nmecha, a highly-rated centre-forward.

The duo’s arrival is timely given that Preston have injury problems in attack.

Alex Neil will hope they can add extra firepower to a squad who came within two points of the Championship play-offs last season.

 

How will the Swans line up?

There is certain to be at least one change to the side Potter picked for the opening game of the season because Federico Fernandez, who started at Sheffield United, has left for Newcastle United.

With Jordi Amat also gone, the Swans are short on experienced central defenders.

Potter could turn to youngster Joe Rodon, who was on the bench last weekend, while Kyle Naughton is a contender to come into the side after he missed the Blades clash with a groin problem.

Declan John is another new name in contention. He is fit and available following his deadline-day switch from Rangers.

 

Home help

If the Swans are going to enjoy a positive year in the Championship this season, then home form will be key.

Having lost the final three Liberty fixtures of the last campaign, including that painful reverse against Southampton, they are due a victory on their own patch.

After all, the Swans have not lost four home games in a row since 1991, when Terry Yorath was in charge at Vetch Field.

Potter hopes the fans can play their part in ending the losing run tomorrow.