'We regroup and move forward'

28th November 2018
First team

Graham Potter urged his players to regroup and move forward after Swansea City’s 2-1 home defeat to West Bromwich Albion.

The Swans were looking good when Oli McBurnie’s fine finish put them in front after only 11 minutes.

But Albion equalised just two minutes later when Craig Dawson rose highest at a corner to nod over Erwin Mulder and into the net.

And after missing a big chance to retake the lead through Daniel James, the Swans were undone by another set-piece just before the break as Ahmed Hegazi headed home at the far post.

The hosts battled hard as they searched for a response, but Albion sat deep and held on to inflict the Swans’ second successive home reverse.

Despite the loss, Potter felt his team deserved credit for large parts of their performance.

“The nature of the goals we conceded was disappointing,” said the Swans boss.

“We have got to do better in that area. We have done that all season, but clearly we were not good enough tonight.

“But apart from that, I have got nothing but admiration for the players for their courage and their understanding of what we were trying to do.

“The first half was as well as we have played against a good team who are really dangerous on the transition.

"They have scored a lot of goals that way and we did well there.

“But the set-piece goals change the complexion of the game. They allowed them to sit back in the second half and the spaces were not there so much for us.

“The effort was there – we put everything into the game. We lacked something in the final third in the second half but, while we’re disappointed with the result, there are large aspects of the performance that were pleasing.

“It’s hard to be really pleased after a loss, but I think there’s a lot to go forward with.

“We now have to focus on regrouping, putting the disappointment behind us and trying to go to Derby (on Saturday) in a positive frame of mind.”

Potter acknowledged that the Swans “must learn from” Albion’s pair of set-piece strikes.

But having switched to a 3-5-2 set-up to contend with the freescoring Baggies’ attacking threats, he was happy with his team’s tactical approach.

“I thought that went really well,” he added.

“The way they set up their attacking three challenges a conventional set-up.

“If you watch their game against Leeds, they destroyed a good team because of what they do in the transition.

“I can’t remember any chances for them and we got Dan through. We played through them with courage.

“But of course we didn’t do well enough in the key area and that’s the two goals.

“We didn’t defend the set-pieces well enough against a team who are strong on them, and it’s disappointing because it has cost us dearly.”