Saturday 18 November 2017

Paul Clement and Swansea players retain belief despite fear of relegation

Swansea boss Paul Clement continues to believe his side will avoid relegation.
Swansea boss Paul Clement continues to believe his side will avoid relegation.

Swansea boss Paul Clement says his players continue to believe in their Premier League survival mission despite being stuck in the bottom three after their dismal defeat at West Ham last week.

After an initial improvement following Clement's arrival in January, the Swans have slumped and head to Watford on Saturday having picked up just one point from their last five games.

For Clement the manner of the West Ham defeat was particularly galling but he insisted both he and his team will learn from their mistakes as they focus on the last six games of the campaign.

Clement said: "Clearly we're disappointed to have come off the back of five games and only picked up one point, and West Ham was probably the worst we've been since I've been at the club, but we have to move on quickly from that.

"I thought there was an anxiety in our play and it's difficult to say why that was the case. The mood this week was not so good in the first couple of days but spirits have really been lifted and we have belief going into this fixture.

"I'm always someone who will be very analytical about the players, the team and myself, and I think it's a strength of a coach to be able to say where you've not done well enough and what you can do to improve.

"I've told them that I've made some mistakes since I've been here - I'm a human being - and the most important thing is to learn from those things and try to limit those mistakes moving forward."

Clement will be forced into a reshuffle for the trip to Vicarage Road after Jack Cork suffered a recurrence of a recent ankle injury but Fernando Llorente could return to the starting line-up after starting on the bench against the Hammers.

Swansea head into the game two points from safety after the resurgence of rivals like Hull and Crystal Palace, and Clement admitted he has spent a lot of time plotting potential escape routes.

He added: "I've written the fixtures down for us, and all the teams in and around us in terms of our games, and I have looked a lot at our last six fixtures in terms of who we're playing and what their form is like.

"On their day Watford are a real handful because they've got big, athletic, physical players. They had a hard defeat against Tottenham last week but we are expecting a big challenge, and I think every game is going to be a big challenge until the end of the season."

Press Association

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