Swansea City under-23s Gary Richards
5th January 2017
Coach Gary Richards wants to see Swansea City Under-23s pick up from where they left off as they begin 2017 in Premier League 2 with a trip to Blackburn Rovers on Friday (1pm).
The young Swans ended 2016 eight games unbeaten with a 2-1 victory over Chelsea Under-23s before Christmas to ensure they progressed to the quarter-final of the PL International Cup.
Goals from George Byers and Daniel James saw the U23s record their fourth PL2 victory of the season with a 2-1 win over Rovers at Landore in September.
Friday's match is an opportunity for the development side to extend their impressive lead at the top of the Division 2 table with the Swans already holding a ten-point advantage over second-placed Newcastle.
"We aim to start the New Year as well as the last year ended," Richards said.
"Our players have enjoyed a nice break but now we must get back to work and hit the ground running in order to continue our excellent league form this season.
"We want to continue our unbeaten run in 2017 and we can't be complacent with our upcoming games.
"Blackburn always provide a tough test, especially away from home, so we need to make sure we are at our best if we want something from this game.
"I am confident we will start the year well if we continue to work hard and perform to a high standard."
Returning loan players Connor Roberts and Kenji Gorre will not be involved. Meanwhile midfielder George Byers is suspended for the match.
SWANS U23s SQUAD (from): Gregor Zabret, Lewis Thomas, Aaron Lewis, Keston Davies, Tyler Reid, Tom Plezier, Joe Rodon, Tom Holland, Jack Evans, Tom Dyson, Ryan Blair, George Byers, Botti Biabi, Alex Bray, Owain Jones, Alex Samuel, Jordan Garrick, Daniel James.
Follow updates from the game via Twitter @SwansOfficial from 1pm.