Talking Tactics: Tom Carroll

17th March 2018
First team

Football stats experts WhoScored take a look at Tom Carroll ahead of Swansea City’s FA Cup clash with Tottenham at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday.

Swansea have only lost one of their last 14 matches in all competitions and showed incredible resilience to grind out a 0-0 draw against Huddersfield last weekend despite playing with 10 men for nearly 80 minutes.

The Swans have enjoyed a stunning resurgence since Carlos Carvalhal was appointed head coach at the end of 2017 and are now four points clear of the relegation zone.

In fact, if the Premier League started in 2018 then Swansea would be fifth in the table above the likes of Chelsea and Arsenal. However, this weekend Swansea will turn their attentions to FA Cup action.

Swansea have not reached the semi finals of the FA Cup since the 1963/64 campaign and are one win away from a trip to Wembley for the first time since they won the League Cup in 2013.

Saturday’s clash against Tottenham will have extra significance for midfielder Tom Carroll, who is expected to line up against his boyhood club at the Liberty Stadium.

The 25-year-old made 56 appearances for Tottenham before joining Swansea on a permanent deal at the start of 2017 and will aim to get the better of his former club for the first time on Saturday.

Carroll could come face-to-face with former team-mate Harry Winks in Tottenham’s midfield, which will be a neat battle between two technically-minded players.

Tottenham have a statistically-calculated WhoScored weakness of preventing opponents from creating chances and this is where Carvalhal will look to lean on Carroll, who has a statistically-calculated WhoScored strength of key passes.

Carroll has registered more Premier League assists than any other Swansea player this season and the creative burden will fall on his shoulders, particularly with Jordan Ayew suspended.

Even though Mauricio Pochettino’s side are in good form, there are chinks in their armour. They have only won two of their last seven away matches in all competitions and have only managed one clean sheet in that sequence.

Tottenham came from behind to beat Bournemouth last weekend but that was only the first time this season they have managed the feat, while Swansea have a statistically-calculated strength of protecting the lead.

If Swansea can get ahead, as they have in six of their last seven home matches, then players like Carroll, who are capable of recycling possession, will be needed to help Carvalhal’s side through to the next round.

With the incentive of a trip to Wembley daggling at the end of Saturday’s action, Carroll will hope to play an integral part of Swansea’s success as Carvalhal’s side go in search of their eight straight home win for the first time in 14 years.