Sport Soccer

Thursday 23 November 2017

Clement takes responsibility for Swansea loss

Head coach Paul Clement blamed himself for Swansea's defeat to Watford
Head coach Paul Clement blamed himself for Swansea's defeat to Watford

Paul Clement blamed himself for Swansea's third straight Premier League home defeat against Watford.

Brazilian youngster Richarlison took Watford into fifth place as his 90th-minute winner gave them a 2-1 victory - the first time the Hornets have won three consecutive away games in the Premier League.

Swansea substitute Tammy Abraham had earlier cancelled out Andre Gray's first Watford goal to reward a better second-half showing from the hosts.

But that only came after head coach Clement had sent on Roque Mesa and Abraham at half-time and dispensed with playing three central defenders.

"We played really poorly in the first half and I have to take responsibility for that because I chose the shape of the team," Clement said.

"I chose the line-up and it proved to be incorrect, and I think I did the right thing to make the changes at half-time in terms of the shape and personnel.

"We took the initiative, had a lot more control of the game and got back in it.

"There looked like there was only one team who would go on and win it at that point.

"But in that position you must make sure you do not lose the game, and when I look back at their two goals they are gifts."

Clement had praised his players following their goalless draw against Tottenham at Wembley last weekend.

But he criticised them for the second consecutive home game after Richarlison punished Alfie Mawson's timid tackle with a composed finish off the underside of the crossbar.

After the 1-0 defeat to Newcastle, Clement said he found it difficult to "understand what he saw". This time, he said Swansea had "only played for 40 minutes".

"I am very disappointed for the supporters, they have come here to see their side play three times at home and we have lost every game," Clement said.

"On reflection that was a 95-minute game, but we only played for 40 minutes. That is not good enough.

"It is supposed to be easier at home, for some reason at the moment it is not. We played really well here at the end of last season.

"The crowd were disappointed with the first-half performance and I can understand that, I felt the same."

Watford boss Marco Silva was delighted his side had quickly put last weekend's 6-0 home defeat to Manchester City behind them.

"It was a tough afternoon last week, but it's in the past," Silva said.

"Our team showed they had forgotten what happened last Saturday, which was really important.

"We wanted three really important points and we've got our third win away in the Premier League, which is very difficult for a team like Watford.

"We started the game with some really nice football, we scored a goal and controlled the match well.

"But we needed to believe we could score the second to kill the match.

"If we'd have scored a second we could have been a bit more confident."

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