After discovering our shooting boots again, we travel to the Liberty Stadium to play 21st-placed Swansea. We travel as 11/5 underdogs and there are three changes as Michel comes in for Ryan Mason, Stephen Darby replaces Catalin Rentea and Niccolo Marchi starts ahead of Jonny Hayes. The shooting boots remain and are in action in the 8th minute when Dacian Varga passes to Michele Marconi; he runs from the halfway line, into the penalty area and slots past the keeper from 16 yards for his 21st goal of the season. Six minutes later, it’s the turn of Swansea to see if they have their shooting boots, but if they do, they’re certainly not being worn by Nielsen, who blazes wildly over from 20 yards. Nielsen goes closer in the 25th minute when he meets a left wing cross with a header from 10 yards, but Jonathan Bond is alert and gets down well to save. The first booking of the game is in the 31st minute when Fleurin fouls Marchi. After his two earlier chances, Nielsen finds the net in the 35th minute from 16 yards, but thankfully for us it’s the side netting.
Bradley Johnson opens the action in the second half with a free kick from the left being headed over by Bertin Matip from 12 yards in the 57th minute. Five minutes later, Fleurin brings down Marchi again, but the referee lets him off with a warning. Bertin Matip takes the resulting free kick from the right and it hits Rosenior and goes in for an own-goal to double our lead. It’s about time we had some luck on the own-goal front after recently having lost 2 games 1-0 courtesy of own-goals. I make a double substitution in the 69th minute, with Federico Cenci replacing Varga and Aiman Mustafa taking the place of Marconi. Mustafa is in the action within three minutes of coming on when Michel plays him in; Seliga concedes a corner with a good save from his shot from 18 yards. The corner is cleared, but only to Johnson who shoots from 25 yards and strikes the post, with Swansea scrambling clear. Wurte joins Fleuren in the book in the 76th minute when he fouls Michel. I make my final substitution in the 78th minute as Jay Spearing, making his 75th league appearance for us, comes on for Johnson. Four minutes later, an inswinging Matip corner is met by Cenci at the near post with a header, but it’s headed over. Matip takes an outswinging corner three minutes later that finds Mustafa; he mis-hits a shot that reaches Cenci, who crashes a shot against the post and Swansea clear again. Bond is called into action in the 86th minute when Wurte tests him from 18 yards; his parry is cleared for a corner. Two minutes later, Rosenior looks to make amends for his own goal with a free kick from 20 yards, but it goes just wide. In stoppage time, Morrison gets booked for fouling Sharp and Matip joins him in the book for a foul on Fleurin. Michele Marconi is named Man of the Match with a rating of 8.3 and a goal as we stay 4th in the league.
Newcastle announce their new manager and it’s Simon Grayson. Brentford make a loan offer for Clement Baud, all parties agree and he joins them for a month. Whilst Baud goes out on loan, Cameroonian ST Didier Arouna joins on 2 week trial, whilst joining on trial for a week are Ecuadorian DC Diego Caicedo and Chilean DC Jorge Olivares. Polish GK Dariusz Lenartowski joins for a 2 week trial that only lasts a couple of days until terms are agreed and I sign another promising young player: