Sport Soccer

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Crystal Palace v Swansea - Story of the Match

Crystal Palace manager Frank de Boer has lost his first three Premier League matches
Crystal Palace manager Frank de Boer has lost his first three Premier League matches

Swansea added to the dark clouds circling over Frank de Boer's Crystal Palace with a 2-0 victory at Selhurst Park.

Tammy Abraham - with his first Premier League goal - and Jordan Ayew struck either side of half-time to hand Swansea their opening win of the campaign.

But for Palace this is a worrying start to De Boer's reign; no goals, no points and no confidence heading into the international break after three straight defeats.

TWEET OF THE MATCH

"De Boer was sacked after just 85 days at Inter. September 18th looks a long way off right now." - Football writer Matthew Stanger (@MatthewStanger) sounds a note of caution to the Palace boss.

STAR MAN

Sam Clucas. Swansea splashed £15million of the £45m they received for Gylfi Sigurds son on the Hull midfielder. But Clucas was no direct replacement for the Icelandic playmaker here. Just three days after signing, Clucas filled an uncommon role at the base of midfield but his quiet authority and distribution helped sway the game for Swansea.

MOMENT OF THE MATCH

Abraham signalled his intent to be a future superstar with his first Premier League goal. The on-loan Chelsea youngster had little chance to shine in front of goal in his opening two games for Swansea. But Abraham showed great strength by shrugging off Martin Kelly to finish with a close-range volley. It will surely be the first of many for Abraham in the top flight.

VIEW FROM THE BENCH

Both managers were in need of a boost before the international break. Neither De Boer nor Paul Clement had seen their sides score in the Premier League this season. For De Boer it is very much a work in progress and the jury is out on whether he can change Palace's traditional physical style by picking up enough results on the way. Clement's side might be short of quality in certain areas, but they are comfortable in their own skin and were worthy winners.

RATINGS

Crystal Palace

Wayne Hennessey 6 (out of 10)

Joel Ward 6

Timothy Fosu-Mensah 6

Scott Dann 6

James Tomkins 6

Patrick van Aanholt 5

Luka Milivojevic 5

James McArthur 6

Jason Puncheon 6

Andros Townsend 7

Christian Benteke 5

Substitutes

Martin Kelly (for Tomkins, 41mins) 4

Lee Chung-yong (for Van Aanholt, 46mins) 6

Yohan Cabaye (for Milivojevic, 58mins) 6

Swansea

Lukasz Fabianski 7

Kyle Naughton 7

Mike Van der Hoorn 7

Federico Fernandez 7

Alfie Mawson 7

Martin Olsson 7

Tom Carroll 7

Sam Clucas 8

Leroy Fer 7

Jordan Ayew 7

Tammy Abraham 7

Substitutes

Wayne Routledge (for Van Der Hoorn, 70mins) 6

Oliver McBurnie (for Abraham, 78mins) 6

Angel Rangel (for Naughton, 88mins) 6

WHO'S UP NEXT?

Burnley v Crystal Palace (Premier League, September 10)

Swansea v Newcastle (Premier League, September 10)

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