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Blackburn Rovers
Saturday 2nd March 2024
Joma

 

Andy Coleman Notes

Coleman Image

Welcome back to the Swansea.com Stadium for our Championship fixture against Blackburn Rovers.

We come into this game on the back of a fantastic victory last weekend at Sunderland – one that we thoroughly deserved.

The players produced a brilliant performance to bounce back from defeats against Leeds and Ipswich, to go to a tough place and stamp their authority on the game.

There have been some encouraging signs in our last block of games and it was extremely pleasing to see it all come together for Luke, his staff, and the players at the Stadium of Light.

We now hope that we can use that victory as a springboard for the next batch of games leading into the final international break of the season.

Last Saturday also saw Kyle Naughton make his 300th appearance for the club – which is a phenomenal achievement.

Kyle has been a fantastic servant for this club since he arrived here in January 2015, and continues to provide invaluable experience and expertise to the current squad.

This week the club announced that we will hold a fans’ forum at the Swansea.com Stadium on Monday, March 11.

This event is open to all supporters and will take place from 7pm until 9pm in the Day's Lounge.

It will be our second forum of the season after we hosted one last October,and in the interests of transparency and communication, I’m very much looking forward to meeting many more supporters and further interacting with the very heartbeat of this club.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to congratulate Swansea City Women for booking their place in the Genero Adran Trophy final following an emphatic win over The New Saints Women last Sunday.

They will now face Cardiff City in the final next month, and everyone at the club is right behind them in their quest for silverware.

Back to this game, and we know our home form has to improve as we look to move up the league table, so let’s hope we are all celebrating together come full-time.

Thank you for your continued support.

Enjoy the game,

Andy

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A note from Luke WilliamsPhotograph of Luke Williams


Welcome back to the Swansea.com Stadium for our Championship fixture against Blackburn Rovers.

We are excited to be back on home turf after victory over Sunderland last weekend. It’s a long old trek from Swansea to Wearside, so to see so many supporters make the long journey was incredible.

To be able to put in a performance like we did, and get the three points, was a great way to thank them for their efforts.

The efforts you go to supporting your team are greatly appreciated by all of us and the aim now is to back up that performance here at home.

I think in the first half, with the ball, we were very aggressive and very attacking, and the two goals showed some of the things we have been working on at the training ground.

We want to try and see a team that can be really fluid with the ball, but also one that can be mean and press and take the ball off the opposition. The goals were a really great example of that.

In the second half you could see the character and determination to protect the win, so it was a pretty rounded performance.

Ronald took his goals really well and was a real threat. He is a great lad with a great attitude and he has been great to work with, and it was a very special day for Kyle Naughton, who made his 300th appearance for the club.

To reach a landmark like that is a fantastic achievement, but also underlines the player and person Kyle is.

I’ll always be happy to talk about him and sing his praises, he is such a talented player. His understanding and ability to read the game mean he is able to see difficult situations a few steps ahead, and technically he is excellent.

As a group we presented him with a shirt to mark his milestone, and it was thoroughly deserved.

The challenge for us now is to reproduce a performance with that same energy and intensity here in our own backyard.

We know we have got to improve our form at home, and we will be doing everything we can to do so against a Blackburn team who are themselves striving to learn and improve under a new coach in John Eustace, and who gave a great account of themselves against Newcastle United in the FA Cup in midweek.

We have players returning from injury and confidence after winning last weekend, and we want to start building momentum to finish this season strongly and give us a platform to build from as a club.

Enjoy the game,

Luke

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We welcome Blackburn Rovers to the Swansea.com Stadium for a fixture that recognises our celebration of International Women’s Day on Friday, March 8, and also happens to coincide with the first time a female referee, Rebecca Welch, has taken charge of a Swansea City fixture.

So, what better time for our female members of the Swans Trust Board to introduce themselves to you.

They are Cath Dyer, Trust board member and secretary of the Swansea City Disabled Supporters’ Association; Sian Davies, Trust board member and Diane Hughes, chair of our membership group. You can hear from them all below.

Cath Dyer

As the theme this year is ‘Inspire inclusion’, I’m proud to encourage all women to stand up for what you believe in. It can be so difficult to be excluded from things and it hurts.

Showing that I care, that I want to help people feel included and involved certainly makes ME feel better. Being on the Swans Trust board, the secretary of the DSA, and the chair of the DSA support forum for DSAs everywhere has given me the confidence to share my experiences, care and love.

Experiencing the ‘Big Sleep Out’ last November was a challenge and it made me realise how vulnerable women must feel when they are sleeping out alone. I was fortunate to have company, but it’s important that we realise the impact this can have.

International Women’s Day is all about celebrating women everywhere, from each and every background, and ensuring we support each other. 

Now over to Sian…

Sian Davies

Picking up on Cath’s theme of inclusivity, in football everyone’s views should count irrespective of gender, race, ethnicity, age, religion, disability or sexual orientation to name but a few ways in which we identify people.

Sadly this isn’t always the case. One of our main aims as a Trust board is to give more of a voice to female fans, and to inspire and empower young women and girls to become Swansea City fans now and in the future.

As an example, last season I was elected by my fellow board members as Supporter Director to represent the Trust on the board of Swansea City.

It was the first time in the Trust’s history that a woman had held this position. I hope this will pave the way for more women to join the Trust board and take on officer roles.

Swansea City should also be a safe place for all female fans so, please, if you experience any sort of abuse, or discrimination, or feel unsafe in or around the stadium, text the club’s anonymous safe text number, 88440, starting the message with the word SWANS and provide details of the incident. Next, it’s Di…

Diane Hughes

As well as praising the inclusivity shown by our club, Supporters’ Trust and DSA, I would like to reflect on changes more generally over the past 50-plus years.

In the 1970s, my much-missed Dad took me to watch football matches in London; the number of women and girls in attendance was far fewer than now.

I was seen as being different for having an interest that was traditionally the domain of men. Now many women and girls attend matches and, importantly, the women’s game is now flourishing.

In the 1980s I was one of very few women across the whole of Wales in the organisation in which I worked; accountants were seen as men in grey suits.

So, again, I was different, a woman in a man’s world. By the time I retired it was close to being a 50/50 split between women and men, with an increasing number of women in management roles.

I was lucky to have felt included, in both football and work environments. But, half-a-century ago, that was sadly not the experience of many women.

There’s still a long way to go, but inclusivity for women is now the norm in many areas of life, not the exception.

And finally, from us all, as women and girls it’s important that our voices are heard and we make a contribution to the club.

A way to do this is by joining the Supporters’ Trust (https://www.swanstrust.co.uk/join-the-trust/).

For those of you who are already Trust members, why not put yourselves forward for election to the Trust board in the summer?

We would love to hear from you via info@swanstrust.co.uk. And watch this space for further details.

Enjoy the game and let’s hope we can rediscover our home form to match that of our last two away performances.

Cath, Sian and Diane

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An update from the Swans Foundation

Swansea City AFC Foundation took Premier League Kicks participants from Gorseinon to volunteer at Swansea Community Farm as part of the programme’s social action initiative.

The aim of the Premier League Kicks social action project is to provide young people with the opportunity to give back to their local community by volunteering at a charity or organisation, and this year the community farm was the chose venue.

The community farm is an award-winning charity, and the only city farm in Wales. It aims to improve wellbeing and develop skills, while also showing young people how to cultivate local food and produce and care for the natural environment.

Work at the farm is done by volunteers, and the Kicks participants - who were joined by club ambassador Lee Trundle - gave up their time during the school holidays to help look after the animals and complete various maintenance tasks, including clearing out the pens, feeding the animals and creating bug-friendly areas within the farm.

“It’s given the participants a chance to develop practical skills they probably wouldn’t get the opportunity to in school, it’s been great for team building and it’s given them different challenges that they’ve overcome,” said Ami Tanikie, Swansea City AFC Foundation's youth voice lead.

“It’s allowed our participants to do something a bit different and fun in their half-term, but it’s also a chance for them to give back to their community.”

The event was led by the farm’s youth and community manager Cerys Jones, and child and youth worker Katie Harkness.

And Jones was grateful for the extra help at Wales' only inner-city community farm. 

“We focus on getting young people and adults into nature to give back and look after their mental health and wellbeing, so it’s great to be joined by the Foundation to help them with that,” she said.

“They all got stuck in with the activities, they were a lovely bunch of young people and it was lovely having them with us.”

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7 - Joe Allen

With it being St David’s Day weekend it seems fitting to sit down with as proud a Welshman as you could hope to find. A man who represented his country with great pride and distinction.

Joe Allen may have brought down the curtain on his international career last year, but members of the Red Wall still look back with great fondness on 74 caps, three major tournaments and over 13 years pulling on that famous red shirt.

Photograph of Joe Allen


The 33-year-old was part of an influx of talented young players first blooded under John Toshack, and then pushed on by Gary Speed before Chris Coleman built on those foundations to lead Wales to a first major tournament in 58 years when they reached Euro 2016.

An unforgettable summer in France followed, with Allen named in the team of the tournament and dubbed the ‘Welsh Pirlo’, as Wales marched all the way to the semi-finals.

Further appearances at the delayed Euro 2020 finals and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar would follow, with Allen joining a select band of players to represent Wales on the game’s biggest stage.

And, while he admits he would have loved to have got to a century of caps for his country, Allen is able to reflect with pride on his time representing Wales.

“I am really proud of the tournaments, in particular,” he said.

“I wish it could have been more caps as I missed a lot over the years and, as any player would tell you, 100 caps is the real benchmark and target that you want to aspire to get to. But 74 caps isn’t too bad.

“The decision to retire was really tough, I thought it was probably my last game during the last game of the World Cup against England, so I was trying to hold it together.

“I went back and forth in my head for a long time if it was the right choice, but I think age and injuries catches up with you and sometimes you have to clear a pathway for the players coming through.

“But overall, I am proud of the career I had in a Welsh shirt. Representing my country is something that meant so, so much to me.”

Allen was first capped under Toshack in the summer of 2009 as a substitute in a friendly against Estonia at Parc y Scarlets in Llanelli.

Photograph of Joe Allen from his international debut in Llanelli vs. Estonia


The side that played that night was the youngest Wales had ever fielded, and there were just over 4,000 watching from the stands.

It may have seemed an inauspicious start, but Allen and those involved sensed it was the start of a new era.

“It did feel like it was the start of something different,” he says.

“I thankfully got the call up to the squad that summer, it was a huge moment for me to get my first cap. There were a lot of us who had known each other through the youth sides up to the under-21s and came through around the same sort of time.

“It was not the most glamorous tie with it being a friendly but that did not matter to me, it was great to get out there and I was just hoping it wouldn’t be the only cap that I got.”

That new era moved to the next level when Speed was named as Toshack’s successor.

Speed insisted on the raising of standards and resources when it came to sports science, match preparation and player welfare; wanting those in the national squad to find facilities on a par with what those operating in the Premier League would find at their clubs.

In no time at all, Speed had led Wales from the depths of 117th in the world rankings to 45th, before he tragically passed away in November 2011, just weeks after watching his side emphatically beat a Norway team then ranked in the world’s top 10.

“He was brilliant, and I loved playing under him,” says Allen.

“He brought a fresh and modern approach and never left a stone unturned, his way of training and playing had a great impact on the team.

“You could see under him how much improvement was made in a short space of time and anyone who played under Gary at that time owes him so much.

“He laid the foundations for the future success. The Norway game was the final game before he sadly passed away and everyone left that camp with huge belief that we were turning things around.

“He aimed a lot higher than probably a lot of people would have, but he saw something and had ambition that our country should be doing better. Why shouldn’t we dream of getting to the Euros and World Cups.”

Coleman took over as Wales boss and initially struggled with succeeding his former teammate, torn between plotting his own path in the role but not wanting to change what Speed had put in place.

But, after a difficult World Cup qualification campaign, things would start to change.

After a nervy win in Andorra kicked off their efforts to reach the Euro 2016 finals, Wales got better as the campaign went on, with a June 2015 win over top seeds Belgium in the pouring rain the stand-out moment.

If Wales fans thought that getting to France was to prove the highlight, they could not have been more wrong.

The Dragons reached the last four, creating iconic memories burned into the minds of those who watched across the channel and at home.

Photograph of Joe Allen during the Euros 2016 Semi-Final vs. Portugal


The anthem and Ben Davies’ block against Slovakia – not forgetting that Gareth Bale free-kick – Chris Gunter’s ‘chin up’ gesture following defeat to England, the dismantling of Russia on a sun-drenched night in Toulouse, and the utter elation of Hal Robson-Kanu and Sam Vokes’ goals against Belgium.

“That summer was one of the best summers of my life, we absolutely loved it and it was a great experience,” he says.

“The connection amongst the group and the connection with the whole country and all the fans, in terms of following the games, travelling to see the games or hearing all the stories from back home was something else.

“One of the things that stands out for me is going for a team walk before the first game and there was a sea of red outside the hotel in Bordeaux, and people could just not wait for the game to start, that gave the players a big boost.

“The anthem in that first game against Slovakia was such an emotional and passionate moment, and the victory itself was a dream start to the tournament.

“Then there was the Russia game, in terms of the performance I thought we were brilliant and blew them away and obviously the Belgium game - the moment that Vokesy scores that header - from the crowd to the pitch was just a moment I’ll never forget.

“When it all finished, there was a real sense from everyone where we almost had the blues straight after with the comedown, but we all said we must try and make something like that happen again.”

It’s little wonder a wide grin creeps across Allen’s face when asked to look back on that summer, when Wales based themselves in the Brittany haven of Dinard and unplugged themselves from the helter skelter of the tournament with walks along the seafront, visits from friends and family and games of pool in Davy’s café.

“It was perfect, I thought the FAW nailed it, it probably was not the first pick for the bigger nations but for what we needed it helped so much,” he said.

“We would be flying into the carnage of the tournament during the games when you are amongst the excitement of the fans, and then we were able to dip out and switch off and be separated again.

“The place we stayed was beautiful, it was a nice and quiet location and as a group we absolutely loved it there.

“I think our approach was we knew how important the tournament was but as a group, we were trusted and didn’t need to have ridiculously strict rules and to make it a prison camp.

“It is the way we did it in the success leading up to qualifying, and it was a summer that when we were working, we would work extremely hard and when there was downtime, the players were hugely grateful that we were allowed to see our families on certain days.

“We could keep things pretty laid back when we were away from the training pitch and away from the games. “

Wales had hoped to back that summer up by going on to claim a first World Cup appearance since 1958 but defeat to the Republic of Ireland – game in which Allen was injured early on – ended aspirations of reaching Russia.

Wales would qualify for the next Euros. Allen had been set to miss the finals after rupturing his Achilles playing for Stoke City against Hull City, but the Covid pandemic forced its delay by 12 months and he had recovered by the time they featured in the pan-continent competition and reached the last 16.

“The second I ruptured my Achilles, and it was confirmed on the pitch, my first thought was ‘my Euros is over, that dream is dead’.

“So, in terrible circumstances, the tournament got delayed, but it gave me a chance to get fit and kept the hope alive that I wouldn’t miss the Euros, which would have been tough to take if I had not been part of the squad.

“Thankfully a year later, I was grateful to have a chance to play in the second one.”

That left the World Cup still to tick off, and Allen played in the emotionally cathartic wins over Austria and Ukraine which booked a place in Qatar.

There are many great images of Allen playing for Wales, but there is one at the final whistle of the Ukraine game where, exhausted, he raises his hands to the air amidst a downpour as the burden of history was lifted.

Photograph of Allen and Johnny Williams celebrating the win against Ukraine.

 

“The Ukraine game was unbelievable,” said Allen.

“We had the Austria game before, which was amazing, but that Ukraine game was just another level.

“The atmosphere and support we had that day and the whole country knew just how much it meant to get there. It helped us so much with getting the game over the line, especially in the late stages.

“I remember the national anthem getting sung before the end of the game and for the players it was really hard to control the emotions because we thought maybe we had done it.”

With Qatar to look forward to, Allen would return home to Swansea City that summer some 10 years after leaving to follow Brendan Rodgers to Liverpool.

But an injury suffered in a 3-0 win over Hull meant his dream of featuring in the global showpiece nearly disappeared before his eyes.

“There was a moment where it (playing at the World Cup) was not going to happen,” says Allen.

“That was the initial diagnosis to the severity of the injury, and I had a moment when it didn’t even seem like an option to try.

“But, when the dust settled, we looked at options and looked at what could be done, what I could do to get there even if the chances were slim.

“I had amazing support and I have to thank everyone who gave up their time and energy and exhausted all the options that were available to help me with my rehab.

 “I also want to thank Rob Page and the Wales medical staff who not only helped me but gave me the chance to prove my fitness when they were under pressure to pick a squad and they kept a space for me to try and make it.”

The finals did not go how Wales had hoped, with a draw against the United States and defeats to Iran and England ensuring an early exit.

Photograph of Allen vs. England in the World Cup

 

Allen admits the experience was a painful one, but one he has been able to gain perspective on as time goes by.

“As more time passes, you understand how big an achievement it was and how proud everyone involved should be,” he says.

“We have all talked about the disappointment of the tournament itself and we wish we could have done better, but it is certainly something for us to be proud of.

“When I was a kid wanting to play in a World Cup for Wales, it felt like a pipe dream, but thankfully I was one of the fortunate ones who managed to experience it.”

Allen’s focus is now on Swansea City and ensuring his club end the season strongly.

Having had spells away with SA1 with Liverpool and then Stoke City, Allen admits the chance to come back to his boyhood club was one he had hoped would come up.

“Home is home, I had been away for the best part of 10 years,” he said.

“I loved my time away but, between me and my wife, we were pining that if there was a chance to come home we would want to do it.

“We actually moved and found a house, and half moved back 18 months before signing back at Swansea.

“But as soon as there was an opportunity to come home I wanted to jump at it, and thankfully the club were open to it.

“When I went away the first time I talked a lot about having the chance to return and finish my career back home.

“When you leave your boyhood club, you can’t help but keep an eye out on how they are doing and wonder if, when the time is right, will you get a chance to wear that shirt again and represent the club.

Photograph of Allen playing for the Swans in 2008


“It was always the plan, thankfully it all worked out and it was such a privilege to join that summer and get back to how things were before.

“I just want to make sure I can contribute and help the team over the remainder of the season.”

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Meet the Opposition

As Swansea City get set to face Blackburn Rovers at the Swansea.com Stadium, we take a closer look at the Lancashire club.

WHAT'S THEIR STORY?

Blackburn Rovers were founded in 1875 and became a founding member of The Football League in 1888.

Rovers have spent most of their existence in the top-flight of English football, winning three league titles - the most recent of which came in the 1994-95 season under Sir Kenny Dalglish.

The Lancashire club have also won six FA Cups and one League Cup, with the latter being their most recent major trophy after they beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 at the Millennium Stadium in 2002.

Rovers were last in the Premier League 12 years ago, and did have a solitary season in League One during the 2017-18 campaign, but returned to the second tier at the first time of asking.

They have been in the Championship ever since.

HOW'S THEIR FORM?

Blackburn have won three of their last 15 matches with two of those wins coming in the FA Cup. Rovers currently sit in 16th place in the Championship, one place ahead of the Swans.

Their away form has been poor, with their last league win on their travels coming in November when they beat Stoke City 3-0. Rovers have also conceded the second-most goals in the division with Rotherham United the only team to concede more.

The GafferPhotograph of John Eutace

 

John Eustace was recently appointed head coach of Rovers replacing, Danish manager John Dahl Tomasson.

Eustace enjoyed a long-playing career, with the midfielder making over 390 league appearances for several different clubs.

His most successful spell came at Watford, where he made 157 league appearances, scored 16 goals, and was captain of the club for three seasons before leaving for Derby County. 

Eustace started his managerial career in 2016, when he was appointed manager of National League side Kidderminster Harriers. He led the side to two play-off campaigns while transforming the their style of play.

Eustace then left the club to join Queens Park Rangers where he would become assistant to former England manager Steve McClaren.

He also had a brief spell as caretaker manager at the club and helped them avoid relegation in 2019.

He was then appointed head coach of Championship side Birmingham City in 2022 where he guided the club to their highest points tally since 2016.

Eustace left the club in October 2023 with the Blues in sixth place with 18 points from 11 matches, before being appointed by Rovers four months later.

The CaptainPhotograph of Dominic Hyam

 

Dominic Hyam was recently appointed captain after midfielder Lewis Travis signed for Ipswich Town on loan during the January transfer window.

Starting his career in Reading’s academy, Hyam had loan spells at Hemel Hempstead Town, Basingstoke Town, Dagenham & Redbridge, Portsmouth and Aldershot before joining Coventry City in 2017.

The Scotsman made 169 league appearances for the Sky Blues, scoring eight times and played a key role in their promotion to the Championship during the 2019-20 season.

Hyam then joined Rovers in 2022, where he has made over 60 league appearances for the Lancashire club.

The defender made his senior international debut in 2023, coming on as a substitute in Scotland’s Euro 2024 qualifying match against Norway.

He was the unfortunate Rovers player to miss the key penalty in their FA Cup shootout defeat to Premier League Newcastle in midweek.

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Photograph of Sammie Szmodics.

 

Forward Sammie Szmodics has been deadly in front of goal this season, and he is currently top scorer in the Championship with 18 league goals in 31 appearance.

Szmodics started his career at Colchester where he made over 140 senior league appearances, while the forward also went out on loan to Braintree, Bristol City and Peterborough during his six-year spell with the U’s.

He went on to sign permanently for Posh after his successful loan spell in 2020, and went on to score 16 goals to help them secure promotion to the second tier.

He joined Blackburn in 2022, scoring on his debut against the Swans, and he has scored 22 more goals for them since.

He has been included in recent Republic of Ireland squads but has yet to win a senior cap.

Photograph of Callum Brittain.

 

Wing-back Callum Brittain has been one of the more creative players for Rovers this season, creating three assists.

The Bedford born defender or midfielder came through the MK Dons academy to make over 100 league appearances in a five-year stint at the club.

Brittain then joined Championship side Barnsley where he was part of the team knocked out in the play off semi-finals by the Swans in 2021. He then joined Rovers in 2022 after the Tykes relegation to League One.

Photograph of Tyres Dolan.

 

Tyrhys Dolan is one of the most exciting players in the Blackburn squad, possessing the pace to take players on and the creative ability to produce a defence-splitting pass.

Dolan had spells at Manchester City, Burnley and Preston during his youth career, however he never made a senior appearance for those clubs.

He joined Rovers in 2020 and has made over 135 senior league appearances, scoring 15 goals.

The most recent of those came in the 3-1 victory at home to Stoke, when he scored a brace.

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Who wore both shirts?

 

Former Wales international and manager Chris Coleman made over 180 appearances for the Swans in all competitions, helping his hometown club to Welsh Cup triumphs in 1989 and 1991, while being part of the squad that secured promotion from the Fourth Division in 1988.

Coleman started his playing career at Manchester City, however he did not make a professional appearance for the club and returned to SA1 in 1987, where he made his first professional appearance at the age of 17 in a 2-0 win against Stockport County in August 1987.

Coleman also had his first taste of European football at the Swans, facing Greek side Panathinaikos over two legs in the European Cup Winners’ Cup as the Welsh club lost out 6-5 on aggregate.

The defender went on to sign for Crystal Palace in 1991, spending four years at Selhurst Park, helping the Eagles reach the Premier League in 1994, only to suffer relegation a year later.

A move to Premier League champions Blackburn Rovers followed, but Coleman’s time at Ewood Park was ruined by injury as he made 28 appearances over two seasons.

Following his time in Lancashire, Coleman dropped down two divisions to sign for Fulham, and was soon made Cottagers captained as they climbed to the Premier League, although the after-effects of injuries suffered in a car crash in 2001 led to his retirement and a move into coaching in October 2002.

Coleman went on to manager Fulham, Real Sociedad, Coventry City and Larissa before taken the Wales job following the tragic passing of Gary Speed.

After a tough start, Coleman would lead Wales to a first major tournament in 58 years as they qualified for Euro 2016, with the Dragons enjoying an unforgettable march to the semi-finals in France.

Since leaving the Football Association of Wales in 2017, he has managed Sunderland, Hebei China Fortune and Atrimitos.

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Match report. Sunderland 1 - Swans 2

Ronald’s first Swansea City goals rewarded a fine away performance and secured three points against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.

 

Sunderland: Anthony Patterson, Jobe Bellingham, Luke O'Nien (captain), Nazariy Rusyn (Luis Hemir 72), Abdoullah Ba (Chris Rigg 72), Jenson Seelt, Dan Neil, Callum Styles (Romaine Mundle 60), Trai Hume, Leo Hjelde (Adil Aouchiche 85), Pierre Ekwah.

Unused Substitutes: Nathan Bishop, Timothee Pembele, Mason Burstow, Caden Kelly, Thomas Lavery.

Swansea City: Carl Rushworth, Ben Cabango, Joe Allen (Jay Fulton 63), Matt Grimes (captain), Jamie Paterson (Jerry Yates 63), Josh Tymon, Przemyslaw Placheta, Liam Cullen (Charlie Patino 78), Nathan Wood, Kyle Naughton (Harry Darling 89), Ronald (Ollie Cooper 89).

Unused Substitutes: Andy Fisher, Mykola Kuharevich, Charles Sagoe Jr, Filip Lissah. 

Referee: Keith Stroud

Attendance: 41,777

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Stilettos and Studs with Julie Kissick

 

Our visitors, Blackburn Rovers, arrive off the back of a dramatic penalty shootout defeat to Newcastle in the FA Cup.

The fifth-round encounter saw the Championship side give a great account of themselves and it was small margins at the death as Dominic Hyam’s spot-kick was saved by Martin Dubravka, to end the game at 3-4 on penalties.

There’s no doubt the neutrals watching the encounter at Ewood Park witnessed a cracking cup tie and the Premier League visitors met a Blackburn side who played out of their skin for the duration.

Blackburn enjoyed the upper hand for large periods of the game, but neither side could find a winner, even after extra-time.

That description of a gutsy Championship side dominating their top-tier opponents is perhaps surprising, especially as Rovers sit in 16th in the league – we’re in 17th but points and goal difference are identical.

Is it a good time to play them, after such an encounter, I wonder?

There was no midweek action for us, so we return to the Swansea.com Stadium fresh from Saturday’s 2-1 win against the Black Cats. I know I speak for Jacks everywhere when I say that result was SWEET!

Ronald celebrates one of his two goals at Sunderland


The relief of seeing the FT appear on the BBC website and knowing that we produced a decent display and got the win, was something else.

We’ll be hoping for more of the same in this game – a chance to build on the momentum of last weekend and rack up more important points to take us further up the Championship table.

If you’re reading this on matchday it is March 2, the day after St David’s Day. There’s another notable day worth more than a cursory mention as well this month, and that occurs next Friday, International Women’s Day (IWD).

I’m going to give an early mention to IWD in acknowledgement of the women who make up our Genero Adran Premier side, as well as to a woman who is an integral part of Swansea City Football Club – Esme Allchurch.

Our women’s side booked their place in the Genero Adran Trophy final last Sunday, thanks to a Stacey John-Davis hat-trick, as well as goals contributed by Emily Thomas and Sammy Wynne. The result sets up a meeting with Cardiff City in the final next month.

In the league, one place and five points separate the sides after 14 games, with Cardiff sitting at the top of the table. I’m sure we all want to wish every member of the squad a happy IWD and the best of luck for the rest of the campaign.

And I want to finish with a mention for a very special woman – and that’s Esme.  Honorary president of the Former Players’ Association at the club, and widow of the late Ivor, Esme is a football fanatic and she loves this club to the core.

So, in advance of International Women’s Day, let’s celebrate Esme, and her years of dedication to our club.

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Erthyglau Cymreag

 

Gyda’r tymor yn brysur dirwyn i ben mae Abertawe dal yn hynod o agos at y tri safle isaf yn y tabl, ond dwi’n teimlo ein bod ni wedi gweld digon gan y tîm dros yr wythnosau i awgrymu na fydden nhw’n cael eu llusgo mewn i frwydr i aros yn y Bencampwriaeth. 

Mae’n bwysig cofio fod Luke Williams wedi cael rhediad anodd iawn o gemau ar ôl cael ei benodi. Yn ei wyth gêm gynghrair wrth y llyw hyd yn hyn maen nhw wedi chwarae’n erbyn Caerlyr, Leeds, Southampton ac Ipswich – sef y timau sy’n y pedwar safle uchaf.

Ond o leiaf fod y gemau yna allan o ffordd bellach, a mae eu gemau nhw dros yr wythnosau nesaf yn edrych yn llawer mwy ffafriol.

Mae’r Elyrch wedi cael dwy fuddugoliaeth dda yn ddiweddar yn erbyn Hull a Sunderland, dau glwb sy’n targedu lle yn y gemau ail-gyfle ar ddiwedd y tymor.

Fel rheolwr tydi hi byth yn hawdd dod mewn i glwb newydd yng nghanol tymor, yn enwedig pan ‘da chi am newid steil chwarae tîm. Dyna’n union be ma Luke Williams wedi geisio ei wneud mewn cyfnod byr o amser, a mae’n ymddangos ei fod o wedi llwyddo i wneud hynny.

Mae’r chwaraewyr yn edrych yn fwy cyfforddus mewn meddiant bellach, a mi oedd safon y pasio yn wych yn ystod y gemau’n erbyn Hull a Sunderland.

Mae’n rhaid rhoi clod hefyd i’r clwb am y chwaraewyr y llwyddon nhw i’w harwyddo’n ystod y cyfnod trosglwyddo ym mis Ionawr.

Mi oedd Williams eisiau asgellwyr o safon – a dyna’n union be mae e wedi ei gael yn Ronald a Przemyslaw Placheta.

Mae’r ddau wedi creu tipyn o argraff, ac wedi ychwanegu cyflymder a goliau i’r tîm dros yr wythnosau dwetha.

Yn ogystal a hynny mae Charles Sagoe Jnr – yr ymosodwr sydd ar fenthyg o Arsenal – yn swnio fel chwaraewyr addawol, felly dwi’n edrych ymlaen i’w weld yn cael rhediad rheolaidd o gemau cyn bo hir.

Dwi wir yn credu y gwelwn ni Abertawe yn symud i ffwrdd o’r tri safle isaf cyn bo hir. Mae ‘na ddigon o dalent o fewn y garfan i gael diweddglo da i’r tymor, gan ddechrau gyda buddugoliaeth yn erbyn Blackburn Rovers heddiw.

OWAIN LLYR

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93-94 Nostalgia

 

This season marks the 30th anniversary of Swansea City’s first trip to Wembley for the Autoglass Trophy final in 1994. To mark it, our club historian Gwyn Rees takes us back through the story of that campaign and some of the key figures involved. Here, he profiles midfielder Colin Pascoe.

Image of Colin Pascoe


Born in Port Talbot in 1965, Colin Pascoe was a product of the Afan Nedd schoolboy side and earned an apprenticeship at the Vetch Field as a 16-year-old.

A highly skilful player, Pascoe had an ability to ghost past opposition defenders and, though slightly built, he was as brave as a lion.

Two years after signing on at the Vetch Field, Pascoe made his league debut at home as a second-half substitute for John Mahoney against Brighton & Hove Albion. This game was a First Division contest and the player, who had already won Wales schoolboy and youth caps, was soon playing for his country at under-21 level.

Sadly, this was the beginning of the end of the club's two-year stint at the top table of English league football, but Pascoe would end the season with a Welsh Cup winners’ medal to his name after the Swans defeated Wrexham over two legs.

His displays at the Vetch Field soon caught the eyes of the national selectors, and in June 1984 he made the first of his 10 senior international appearances against Norway.

During this period Swansea City was in a mess financially and on the pitch, with the heady days of top-flight football quickly becoming a distant memory.

But the one shining light for the club was the form of Pascoe, and soon the Swans were having to fend off offers from clubs in the higher divisions. However, in an FA Cup tie at home against Leyton Wingate he would suffer a broken leg and face a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

Slowly he regained fitness, and formed a good understanding with, among others, Sean McCarthy. The pair made important contributions to the club’s push for promotion in the 1987-88 season.

However, Pascoe would not be at the club when promotion was sealed at the end of the season, having been sold to Sunderland in March in a deal worth £70,000.

Instead of promotion with Swansea, it was promotion with the Black Cats for the midfielder as the Wearsiders clinched the Third Division title shortly after his arrival, while they would be promoted again the following year despite losing the play-off final to Swindon.

Financial irregularities at the Wiltshire club saw the football authorities step in to put Sunderland in the top-flight.

Pascoe spent three seasons in the First Division before rejoining Swansea on loan during the 1992-93 season.

Despite a successful stint at his former side, the two clubs couldn't agree on a fee for the player, and he returned back to Roker Park for the remainder of the season.

But the desire to return back to his maiden club saw both sides reach an agreement, and he Pascoe signed back in in time for the 1993-94 season.

That campaign saw him be instrumental in the run to the Autoglass Trophy final at Wembley, where he was able to celebrate an important victory in the club’s history on the hallowed turf.

Sadly a succession of ankle injuries would go on to blight the following seasons, with his contract being cancelled and a trial at Blackpool following on.

Pascoe had a short stint in Hong Kong, as well as closer to home with Merthyr and Carmarthen Town.

He would come back to the Swans as a coach under Kenny Jackett in 2004, and was assistant manager to Brendan Rodgers as the club climbed to – and established itself in – the Premier League.

He would follow Rodgers to Anfield, so nearly ending Liverpool’s long wait for a league title in 2014, before leaving the club the following year.

Pascoe remains one of a select band of Swans to represent the club in all four divisions of the Football League.

 

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Jack the Lad

 

I like March. Whether it’s the daffodils lining the roadsides, or the lambs in the fields, it always feels like an optimistic month.

So, it’s just as well that I’m in upbeat mood as we enter what’s known as mis Mawrth in Welsh, because it’s going to be a massive month of football.

This match against Blackburn is quite the starter, considering where both teams are in the table and with two relatively new head coach in charge.

We have to remember this is just Luke Williams’ 11th match in charge of the Swans, while his opposite number John Eustace is even newer to his job having only been appointed on February 8.

Both men have been handed one of the toughest assignments in football – being brought in to turn around a club’s fortunes midway through a season.

They will go in this match targeting a positive result following a tough run of games – although last weekend’s win for the Swans was a huge boost for Williams and his team.

Look at the league table and you will see just how tight things are in the bottom half of the Championship – especially between this fixture’s opposing clubs, who sit in 16th and 17th place respectively.

Photograph of Harrison Ashby Challenging Blackburn's Sammie Szmodics


Both have played 34 games and both have 39 points. They even have the same goal difference of -12!

I’m not entirely sure whether Blackburn are a place above us thanks to the fact they’ve scored a handful more goals or because B comes before S in the alphabet!

Either way, the clubs are just four points above the relegation zone and with the majority of clubs in and around the danger area pulling off positive results last weekend, it just goes to show how unpredictable and precarious life can be in this division.

A draw won’t do either club a huge amount of favours, so you can bet both teams will be going all out for a win, which should make for a thrilling match.

But if you think this match is big. There’s even bigger on the way during the rest of the month – no disrespect to Blackburn.

There’s always been something special about a fixture against Watford for Swans fans of a certain age like me.

The race between the two in order to reach the old First Division from the depths of the fourth division back in the late 1970s generated a great rivalry between the clubs, then managed by Graham Taylor and John Toshack.

There were some cracking match-ups here in Swansea and at Vicarage Road during that era, including a thrilling 3-3 draw played out at the Vetch almost 46 years ago to the day as player-manager Toshack took charge of the Swans for the first time.

And a year later, we heard ‘The Swansea City Song’ played live for the first time when Roger Evans and his band performed the club’s anthem on the pitch ahead of a 3-2 win over the Hornets.

With Watford sitting in 11th place at the time of writing, it’s going to be a tough assignment for the Swans, but one that is eminently achievable.

Then, of course, come a couple of derby matches against our closest geographical rivals in the Championship.

Again, Bristol City will be a tough task, as they currently sit one place below Watford, but these are the type of clubs the Swans will want to target in order to climb up the table.

With the Jack Army always making the relatively short trip over the River Severn in their numbers, there will be plenty of support cheering on the Swans in what should be a genuinely big-match atmosphere.

Of course, this will just be a warm-up for the really big one – Cardiff!

I know the pragmatists will point out that you get the same points for beating Cardiff as anyone else in the league, and three points against the Bluebirds is no more important than three points gained against any other club.

Believe that and you’ll believe anything!

Photograph of Liam Cullen heading the ball away from Yakou Meite


Yes, on a purely mathematical level, a point earned against Cardiff is no greater than a point gained against any other club as far as the table is concerned.

But on an emotional and morale-boosting level, any points won against our neighbours from up the M4 are priceless.

You simply can’t put a value on a win against Cardiff as far as players and fans are concerned, let alone the city in general.

Now, I know not all Swans fans are Wales fans, but as soon as we’ve got the south Wales derby done and dusted, there are potentially two massive clashes on the horizon, which will grip the whole of the country.

Almost unbearably, just a few days after the emotional rollercoaster of the derby, the national team play Finland in a European Championship play-off semi-final at the Cardiff City Stadium.

A win on that Thursday evening, will mean an even bigger match against either Poland or Estonia on the Sunday, when Wales will be playing for a place at this summer’s finals in Germany.

Even if you’re not a fan of international football, or not Welsh, the fortunes of the national side tend to have a direct impact on the Swans.

A successful Swans side invariably coincides with a successful Welsh team and vice-versa. And it always helps if Wales are doing well when visiting fans start chanting ‘Ingerlund, Ingerlund’ at the Swansea.com Stadium!

With the play-offs out of the way, it’s back to league action for the final match of a busy month – a trip to Yorkshire for a clash with Sheffield Wednesday.

Given Wednesday’s lowly position in the table, a Swans win could be vital not just to propel us further up the table, but to keep the home side occupying one of the relegation places.

And if that lot doesn’t get you excited about what’s in store over the next month, wait until you see what April has got in store for us! Half-a-dozen matches in the space of four weeks!

Buckle up Jack Army, the next couple of months are going to be quite a ride!

C’mon you Swans!

 

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Match Report, Sheffield United U21s 5 - Swans U21s 1

Swansea City Under-21s bowed out of the Premier League Cup after defeat to Sheffield United at Bramall Lane. 

Mason Holgate headed the hosts ahead in the ninth minute, with William Osula adding a second with another powerful header before half-time.

Jay Tinsdale netted the third goal of the evening in the second period after capitalising on a loose pass to send his low shot round the keeper before Oliver Arblaster got on the scoresheet on the the hour mark with a close-range finish.

Cameron Congreve pulled a goal back when he converted from the spot with 10 minutes to go after Sammy Henia-Kamau was fouled inside the six-yard box, but the Blades went straight up the other end to round off the scoring as Osula completed his brace.

Filip Lissah had returned to skipper the Swansea side after enjoying his recent experience in Luke Williams' first-team set up. Joe Thomas, meanwhile, was handed his first start since suffering an ankle injury in early January.

The Swans fashioned the first chance of the evening, Liam Smith cut inside after fending off two Bladesmen but saw his effort blocked.

United then sent Andre Brooks in on goal, forcing Archie Matthews to scamper off his line to collect.

However, from the Blades’ second corner in the opening stages, on-loan Everton centre-back Holgate rose highest to head home Sydie Peck’s delivery inside 10 minutes.

The hosts almost added a second when Matthews was called into action moments later. The goalkeeper pushed away Osula's close-range strike.

Richard Faakye's sliding tackle then blocked Tinsdale's shot, with Matthews safely collecting a follow-up effort.

Scotsman Smith tried his luck again for the Swans after some good pressing work, only for his shot from a tight angle to be sent wide of the target.

Photograph of Mitchell Bates

Smith got involved again and proved luckless once more.

Lissah advanced down the middle and made space to pick out Ben Lloyd. Smith emerged from the right to reach the cross from the Welshman, but could not connect cleanly.

Congreve then fired behind from an excellent delivery by Thomas just before the break.

Swansea had enjoyed the better end to the first period but they fell further behind early in the second.

The Blades got their third goal of the evening within five minutes of the restart. Tinsdale got hold of a loose pass and rounded the Swans keeper to slot the ball into the empty net. 

Swansea continued to battle. Thomas saw a powerful header cleared off the line from a corner,  after Smith's initial deflected strike has flown over the bar seconds before.

It was the hosts who were proving more clinical in front of goal, and they added a fourth goal when Arblaster was found free in space to drill the ball beneath Matthews.

The Swans were awarded a penalty in the closing stages after Henia-Kamau was brought down in the six-yard box, with Congreve converting from the spot to get the visitors on the board.

But United had the last word as Osula flew up the other end to find the bottom corner with a calm finish as the south Yorkshire club advanced to the quarter-finals.

Swansea City Under-21s: Archie Matthews, Joe Thomas (Iestyn Jones 81), Kian Jenkins, Joel Cotterill, Richard Faakye, Filip Lissah (Josh Carey 46), Ben Lloyd (Sammy Henia-Kamau 72), Mitchell Bates, Maliq Cadogan (Glory Nzingo 72), Cameron Congreve, Liam Smith.

Substitutes: Remy Mitchell.

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Get to Know Joel Cotterill

 

DOB

10/10/2004 

Position 

Centre-Midfielder

Nationality

Welsh 

Signed for the Swans

I joined at under-seven level. 

What is your best memory in a Swans shirt?

Scoring a 90th minute free-kick for the under-12s against Everton in the semi-final of a tournament. 

What is your favourite thing about Swansea?

The beaches. 

Who is your football idol?

Kevin De Bruyne 

What is your favourite film?

White Men Can’t Jump 

Who is your favourite music artist?

Chris Brown  

What is your cheat meal?

Chinese Takeaway 

What subject were you best at in school?

P.E 

Football bucket list

To play in the Premier League. 

A stadium you’d love to visit (as a player or fan)

Old Trafford 

Your first football memory

Playing with my brother when I was little. 

Any other sports?

Cricket 

Preferred shirt number

10 

Your roommate for away games

Azeem Abdulai 

Favourite computer game

Call of Duty 

Aim for the season?

Play for the first team. 

Who is the most famous person you’ve met?

Gareth Bale 

Swansea University
Match Report, The New Saints Women 1 - Swans Women 5

Stacey John-Davis scored a hat-trick as Swansea City Women booked their place in the Genero Adran Trophy final with an emphatic win over The New Saints Women. 

Emily Thomas - fresh from recently signing a semi-pro contract - opened the scoring with a headed effort after just six minutes, before Sammy Wynne doubled Swansea’s advantage with a stunning strike from distance.

John-Davis made it three just before the break, and went on to add a fantastic quickfire double in the second half to complete her treble.

TNS would pull one back late, Chelsea Herbert making a double save before Chloe Shirley found the net, but it was nothing more than a consolation for the hosts.

The Swans had started the game brightly, with Chloe Chivers’ effort from distance flashing just over the bar.

But it wouldn’t take long for the Swans to open the scoring, with Thomas heading home Chivers’ cross just six minutes in. The goal was Thomas’ sixth in the competition this season, with the forward having netted five goals in a 13-0 win over Llandudno in the earlier rounds.

Chivers almost had a second assist just nine minutes later after she found Hosford in the box, but the skipper’s low effort was blocked inside the six-yard box.

But Wynne would double the visitors’ lead just a minute later. Chivers’ low effort from outside the box cannoned off the post and found Wynne in space on the edge of the box, giving the midfielder to a curl a fantastic 25-yard strike into the top-right corner.

TNS had the chance to pull one back 10 minutes later, Swansea keeper Herbert did well to punch a corner delivery clear, but it fell to Chantelle Teare who fired well over the bar.

Instead of the hosts pulling a goal back, the Swans would further extend their lead before the interval when Thomas found John-Davis on the edge of the box for the forward to curl a fantastic low shot in off the inside of the post.

 

Photograph of Swans Women Celebrating

 

Jess Williams had the chance to make it four just before the break, Hosford’s delivery picked out the defender in the box, but her effort was wide of the target.

The Swans dominance continued after the break, Ellie Lake going close with a curling effort that whistled just past the post.

John-Davis would then add her second of the game with a stunning strike, firing from the right side of the area into the top left corner to give the keeper no chance.

Just two minutes later, John-Davis would complete her hat-trick. The forward stepped up to a free-kick and arrived the ball into the top corner to make it 5-0.

Teare came close to pulling one back after a period of TNS pressure, the ball fell to her on the edge of the box but she fired just wide.

But the hosts did pull one back late on, Herbert produced a smart double save before Shirley tapped home into an open net.

However, it wouldn’t be enough to dampen the Swansea spirits as they reached the final of the Genero Adran Trophy.

 

The New Saints Women: Ellie Suckley, Beth Lewis (captain) (Evie Manders 74), Melanie Barlow (Matlida Edge 69), Chatelle Teare, Chloe Shirley, Tia Lockley, Caitlin Chapman (Lauren Dunkerly 39), Helen Evans (Nicole Samson 74), Isobel Redding, Lia Lewis, Emily Ridge

Unused subs: Lois Jones.

Swansea City Women: Chelsea Herbert, Steph Turner (Alicia Powe 82), Ellie Lake, Chloe Chivers (Lucy Finch 69), Katy Hosford (captain), Stacey John-Davis, Sammy Wynne (Rachel Cullen 59), Sophie Brisland-Hancocks, Monet Legall (Rhian Williams 82), Emily Thomas (Jazz Guymer 82), Jess Williams.

Get to Know: Kelsey Thomas

 

Do you have a nickname?
Kels

Your date of birth
05/02/05

Your nationality
Welsh

What position do you play?
CM or RWB 

Which is your preferred foot?
Both

Which clubs did you play for before joining Swansea City?

Boldmere St Michaels, Swansea City , Aberystwyth, Carmarthen Town

What is your best moment in a Swansea City shirt?
Winning the league and cup in 2021

What is your favourite thing about playing for Swansea City?

I’ve been a supporter of Swansea City all my life , so playing for Swansea is extra special!

Who is your football idol?

Growing up I used to enjoy watching Chico Flores because he was passionate about playing for the club and gave 100% in every game.

What is the first position you played in football?

Midfielder

What is your first memory of football?

Watching Swansea v Chelsea in the semi-final of the Capital One Cup. The Swans won and went to Wembley.

What is the first football shirt you owned?

A Swansea City 2013-2014 Chico Flores number 4 shirt!

Do you have any pre-match rituals or superstitions?

I do like to listen to music before the game , and I am known to be the last one out of the changing rooms.

What is your full-time occupation?

I’m a student

What is an interesting fact about you?

I was a mascot for Swansea City at Old Trafford in 2016. I got to meet all the players from both teams and Ashley Williams presented me his shirt after the match.

Who is the most famous person you've met?

I’ve got two, Wayne Rooney and Cristian Ronaldo. I met Wayne Rooney at Old Trafford when I was a mascot for Swansea City, and I met Cristiano Ronaldo at Old Trafford before a Wolves game.

What is something that is on your bucket list?

I’d like to travel, and also win the league again with Swansea to compete in the Champions League.

What is your favourite film?

I don’t have a favourite film but I do enjoy watching YouTubers such as (Sidemen)

Who is your favourite music artist?

The Weeknd

What is the best TV series you've watched?

Stranger Things on Netflix

What is the best concert you've been to?

The Weeknd

What was your favourite subject in school?

Sports

Do you play computer games? If so, which ones?

I play Fifa!

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Memorable Match

 

Swansea City 3 - 0 Blackburn Rovers
Premier League - April 14, 2012
 
Photograph of Danny Graham joining the celebration with Nathan Dyer

 

The Swans all but secured survival in their maiden Premier League season thanks to this comprehensive victory over Blackburn at the Liberty. 

Brendan Rodgers team were impressive as they dismantled a Rovers outfit who were heading for relegation.

Gylfi Sigurdsson put the Swans in front before Scott Sinclair and Danny Graham combined to tee up Nathan Dyer for the second goal.

And any hope of a Rovers revival was killed off when Sigurdsson hit the post from point-blank range and the ball ricocheted into the net off Scott Dann.

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Junior Jacks

Shwmae Junior Jacks,

Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Hapus and welcome back to the Swansea.com Stadium! 

Did any of you travel to Sunderland last weekend? It was a long, long trip (250 miles as the Swan flies!) but it was all worth it to see Ronald’s goals! 

We think he’ll score again today, and we’ll will 2-1. What’s your score prediction? 

We also want to say da iawn to today’s Junior Jack of the Week, Will, who made the Swansea.com Stadium out of cardboard. It’s amazing!

Don’t forget, there’s still time to enter our St. David’s Day social media competition to win a family trip to Superbowl UK in Swansea.

Click the post below for details and to enter.


This week’s quiz is about player nationalities.

See how you get on below.

C’mon the Swans!
Cyril and Cybil

TAKE THE QUIZ

Junior Jack of the WeekJunior Jack of the Week, Will

 


What was the first Swansea City game you attended?
Luton Town when I was 5 years old.

What is your favourite memory of watching the Swans?
My favourite memory is when I watched Joel Piroe last minute free kick during the West Brom game in May 2023.

Who is your favourite Swans player and why?
I love Liam Cullen because he scores loads of goals!

What do you like most about supporting Swansea City?
I love the atmosphere of coming to a game and being part of the crowd, cheering my team on.

Why did you start supporting Swansea City?
They are my local team and I'm proud to be part of the Jack Army.

Do you play football? If yes, what position do you play?
Yes, I play for a football club and I'm a striker.

Do you play any other sports? What are they?
I love sports! I do kick boxing and athletics. My favourite activity in athletics is sprinting.

What is an interesting fact about you?
I made a 3D model of Swansea’s stadium that is now on display in my class in school [pictured]. I'm really proud of it.

What is your favourite subject in school and why?
PE is my favourite subject because I love playing football.

Today's Mascots

MASCOTS

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Josh Key, Sponsored by Infinity Document SolutionsJay Fulton, Sponsored by Davies ChemistsBen Cabango, Sponsored by Happy Home FurnishersHarry Darling, Sponsored by Glanmor Chartered SurveyorsJoe Allen, Sponsored by The Morgans CollectionMatt Grimes, Sponsored by Owens GroupJerry Yates, sponsored by TrimologyJamal Lowe, Sponsored by AmmcomJamie Paterson, Sponsored by SchmidtPrzemyslaw Placheta, Sponsored by Ammcom Charlie Patino, Sponsored by HGV Drivers UKMykola Kuharevic, Sponsored by Amroc Heating Liam Cullen, Sponsored by Pure CyberCarl Rushworth, Sponsored by AWSNathan Wood, Sponsored by A1 ResinCharles Sagoe Jr, Sponsored by Celtic Furniture InstallationsKyle Naughton, Sponsored by Spartan Scaffolding SolutionsHarrison Ashby, Sponsored by Aqua GasOllie Cooper, Sponsored by TW GroupRonald, Sponsored by Jones Brothers
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Radio City 1386AM

 

An audio commentary service is available for blind and partially sighted fans – provided by Radio City, the Swansea University Health Board Hospital Radio Service.

Radio City has a long association with the football club dating back to the days when the club was known as Swansea Town.

Since moving to the Swansea.com Stadium, the broadcaster has provided a live descriptive commentary service for free at all Swansea home matches, meaning that blind and partially-sighted supporters in both the home and away ends can follow the action.

In order to book a headset for the match, supporters can contact the accessibility team in advance by emailing accessibility@swanseacity.com, or contacting the ticket office from Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm by calling 01792 616629 and selecting option one.

Supporters can also book headsets in person in advance at the ticket office, or on the day by speaking to a Disability Liaison Steward on the day.

To learn more about Radio City, visit www.radiocity1386am.co.uk. To learn more about accessible facilities at the stadium, please click here.

Swansea Inclusion Room

The inclusion room at the Swansea.com Stadium is open every matchday for supporters who may require a quiet space during games.

Supporters will be able to attend live matches at the Swansea.com Stadium with the comfort of knowing there is a designated area should they need it. The room is available to any supporter that may require a quiet space.

The space will be monitored by a designated disability liaison steward and provides a safe space with a disabled toilet, a projector to watch the live game, and dignity packs for those who need it.

While some supporters who require a time away from the crowds may prefer to use this room as a quiet space, it will also be possible to watch the match live on a screen projected onto the wall meaning supporters who require the space for any reason don’t have to miss a moment of the match action.

The room is located in the West Stand and, while supporters who feel they may benefit from the use of the space will be recommended to sit in that stand, it will be accessible for anyone in any part of the stadium.

Any supporter who feels overwhelmed by the matchday environment for any reason can gain access to the room by making themselves known to a steward or disability liaison steward.

Report Discrimination

We are all Jacks is Swansea City’s commitment to diversity, equality and inclusion both within the club and throughout the local community.

Working with international and local charities, as well as supporter groups, Swansea City strives to ensure that a visit to the Swansea.com Stadium is a welcoming experience for everyone regardless of sex, sexuality, gender identity, religion, race, disability, or age.

The club takes a zero-tolerance approach to discrimination, harassment, victimisation, bullying and abuse.

Supporters are encouraged to report instances of abusive and discriminatory language within the stadium by using the anonymous safe text number 88440, starting the message with the word SWANS and providing details of the incident.

Messages will be charged at the standard rate for your network provider.

The details from the message will be received at the match control room, where any necessary investigation and/or action will be taken. The club will also record the mobile number of the individual reporting an incident to aid with any inquiries.

Joma
Swans Squad

Head Coach Luke Williams

Andy Fisher

Josh Key

Jay Fulton

Ben Cabango

Harry Darling

Joe Allen

Matt Grimes ©

Jerry Yates

10 Jamal Lowe

11 Josh Ginnelly

12 Jamie Paterson

14 Josh Tymon

17 Przemysław Płacheta

18 Charlie Patino

19 Mykola Kuharevich

20 Liam Cullen

22 Carl Rushworth

23 Nathan Wood

24 Charlie Sagoe Jr

26 Kyle Naughton

28 Liam Walsh

29 Nathan Broome

30 Harrison Ashby

31 Ollie Cooper

33 Bashir Humphreys

35 Ronald

36 Ben Lloyd

40 NUMBER RETIRED

41 Sam Parker

45 Cameron Congreve

46 Ben Hughes

47 Azeem Abdulai

50 Filip Lissah

Sunderland Squad

Head coach John Eustace

1 Aynsley Pears

2 Callum Brittain

3 Harry Pickering

4 Connor O’Riordan

5 Dominic Hyam ©

6 Sondre Tronstad

7 Arnor Sigurdsson

8 Sammie Szmodics

9 Sam Gallagher

10 Tyrhys Dolan

11 Joe Rankin-Costello

12 Leopald Wahlstedt

14 Billy Koumetio

16 Scott Wharton

17 Hayden Carter

18 Dilan Markanday

19 Ryan Hedges

20 Harry Leonard

21 John Buckley

23 John Fleck

24 Andrew Moran

25 Jake Batty

27 Lewis Travis

29 Jack Vale

30 Jake Garrett

33 Samir Telalovic

34 Joe Hilton

35 Jordan Eastham

44 Yasin Ayari

45 Ben Chrisene

Match Officials

Referee - Rebecca Welch

Assistant Referee 1 - Shaun Hudson

Assistant Referee 2 - Alex James

Fourth Official - Lee Swabey

Swansea City AFC Badge

Chairman - Andy Coleman
Honorary Club President - Alan Curtis MBE

Directors

Jason Levien, Andy Coleman, Nigel Morris, Brett Cravatt, Jake Silverstein, Martin Morgan, Paul Meller (supporter director), Romie Chaudhari, Bobby Hernreich, Todd Marcelle, Gareth Davies.

Chief of Staff and Head of Strategy: Ken Gude

Associate Directors: Adam Lewis.

FIRST-TEAM STAFF

Head Coach - Luke Williams

Assistant Head Coach - Ryan Harley

Assistant Head Coach – Alan Sheehan

Head of Goalkeeping – Martyn Margetson

First Team Coach Analyst - George Lawtey

First Team Coach - Kris O'Leary

Head of Medical - Dr Jez McCluskey

Staff: Ailsa Jones, Bethany Chaddock, Matt Murray, Thomas Gittoes, Michael Eames, Shaun Baggridge, Shaun Howl, Jonathan Jones, Jono Aveston, Jake Dayus, Patrick Orme, Lewis Binns, Chris Watkins.

SENIOR MANAGEMENT GROUP

Paul Watson (Sporting Director); Andrew Davies (Head of Commercial, Operations, & Facilities);
Gareth Davies (CFO).

CLUB STAFF

Club Secretary: Ben Greenwood

Football Operations &
Administration Manager: Rebecca Gigg

Head of Commercial: Richard Morris

Head of Marketing: Katie Doyle

Head of Partnerships: Lee Merrells

Head of Hospitality, Events and Fan Engagement: Catherine Thomas

Head of Retail: Andrea Morris

Ticket Office Manager: Lewis Bullen

Head of Safeguarding: Rebeca Storer

HR Manager: Nicola Butt

Head of Media & Communications:
Ben Donovan

Head of Facilities: Gordon David

Grounds Manager: Evan Davies

Disability Access Officer: Catherine Thomas

Head of Swansea City AFC Foundation: Paul France

Club Ambassador: Lee Trundle

PROGRAMME PRODUCTION

Contributors: Andrew Gwilym, Hayley Ford, Sophie Davis, Rachael Tucker, Cerith White, Dom Hynes, Sammy Wynne, Fraser Dickson, Ben Donovan, Owain Llyr, Julie Kissick, Owen Morgan, Gwyn Rees, James Dow.

Designers: Callum Rothwell,
Jordan Morcom, Lewis Ward

Photography: Athena Picture Agency,
Natalie John-Davis, Alamy.