Talking Tactics | Swansea City v Brentford
Football stats expert WhoScored.com take a look at the form of Connor Roberts, and analyse why he could prove to be a key figure in Swansea City's clash with Brentford.
Swansea City romped to a 5-1 win over Championship rivals Nottingham Forest on Saturday afternoon to book their spot in the next round of the FA Cup, setting up a meeting with Premier League powerhouse Manchester City in the process. However, the Swans focus will now be all on their clash with promotion rivals Brentford.
The Bees sit just two points behind Swansea ahead of Wednesday's clash and have a game in hand over Steve Cooper's side. Brentford come into the game on a 16-game unbeaten league run which has pushed them into contention for an automatic promotion finish, while their 21 points picked up on the road is the third best in the league at the time of writing.
However, their recent form at the Liberty Stadium hasn't been great, which bodes well for the Swans. Indeed, Swansea have won five of their last six home meetings with the Bees, netting 12 times in the process.
And, while Brentford have impressed on the road, Swansea's home form is a key reason for their push up the table. Only two teams have earned more points on home turf than Cooper's side (25) in the Championship this season and, coupled with their recent meetings with Brentford in south Wales, they'll be targeting another three points in midweek.
With the decision to field a three-man defence and wing-backs paying off for Swansea, Connor Roberts and Jake Bidwell have the means to maintain their good form in the final third against the Bees.
The WhoScored.com match forecast suggests it is Very Likely that Swansea 'will score from a wingplay situation' and with Roberts coming into the clash on the back of some solid performances, the Wales international will seek to add to his five assists this season.
Roberts is already enjoying his most prolific campaign to date, with his tally of five assists among the best in the Championship. Boasting a statistically calculated WhoScored.com strength of 'key passes', he has the means to really test a Brentford defence that has conceded in each of their last three away league matches.
Of course, the Bees are not to be underestimated even with their poor record at Swansea in recent seasons, and left-back Rico Henry could be a key figure for them in midweek.
Henry is set to be the man tasked with ensuring Swansea enjoy little success down the right flank and, boasting a WhoScored.com strength of 'concentration', the left-back knows how to keep his composure in order to limit Roberts' influence down the Swans' right.
Yet the Wales international is enjoying arguably his best season to date and will be looking to prolong his good run against the Bees on Wednesday night, in what supporters are hoping will result in another three points in a crunch contest.