Monday 23 April 2018

Bony sparks destruction of 10-man Valencia

Wilfried Bony scored his fifth goal in eight games
Wilfried Bony scored his fifth goal in eight games

Andrew Gwilym

SWANSEA recorded the most famous win in their history as their Europa League campaign began with a dismantling of 10-man Valencia.

The home side were forced to play 80 minutes with 10 men after defender Adil Rami saw red for hauling down Wilfried Bony.

The striker went on to give Swansea the lead in the 14th minute with his fifth goal in eight games, firing home with the help of a deflection.

Michu and a wonderful Jonathan de Guzman free-kick completed the scoring in the second half as the Swans cruised to victory at a stunned Mestalla.

There have been more important victories in Swansea's 101 years, but few as eye-catching as this impressive rout, adding another chapter to their remarkable rise from League Two to the Premier League, League Cup glory and this European campaign.

Valencia, two-time Champions League finalists, had only lost to English opponents on three previous occasions here, but they were in trouble from the moment Rami saw red.

Bony threatened to race clear of the Frenchman and the referee quickly had the card out of his pocket as Bony went to ground.

The Ivory Coast international got the opener shortly after as Alejandro Pozuelo and Michu combined for him to rifle home.

Pozuelo, an exciting presence throughout, was involved again when his excellent pass teed up Michu for the second in the 58th minute.

And De Guzman rounded matters off with a spectacular strike four minutes later to leave the Welsh club in dreamland.

Manager Michael Laudrup hailed his team's performance and said their margin of victory could have been even greater.

"It was a fantastic game. Of course a red card early in the game has an influence, but, in my many years in football, I have seen sides go down to 10 men at home in these kind of games and still win.

"But we dominated the game from the first minute to the last minute. We scored three goals, and it could have been even more.

"I am very pleased about winning here against a big side like Valencia. I've had some great nights as a manager, it's difficult to take in because this has only just happened.

"But I am so pleased for everybody because now they know they can play against the biggest clubs in the biggest stadiums without any problem and that's great to see.

"There were lots of our fans here. I think they had a great night, one of those to remember; this experience is great for them."

Indo Sport

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