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Match Previews

PREVIEW: Sky Blues Face Swansea Tonight

City are looking for their second league win of the season...

20 October 2020

The Sky Blues take on Swansea City at St Andrew’s on Tuesday night. Here’s everything you need to know about our opponents.

                            

Fact File

Name: Swansea City

Founded: 1912

Stadium: Liberty Stadium (first opened 2005)

Capacity: 21,088

Nickname: The Swans, The Jacks

Address: Liberty Stadium, Landore, Swansea, SA1 2FA

Pitch Size: 115 x 74 yards

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The Opposition

Swansea impressed in the Championship last season, achieving a sixth-place finish before suffering defeat over two legs to Brentford in the play-off semi-finals.

The Swans boast plenty of young talent in their squad having brought in England under-21 internationals Freddie Woodman, Marc Guehi and Morgan Gibbs-White on loan.

Despite selling centre-back Joe Rodon to Tottenham Hotspur at the end of the domestic transfer window, Swansea were able to bring in Ryan Bennett, Korey Smith and Jamal Lowe on permanent deals.

The Welsh side have made a good start to the 2020/21 campaign, winning three of their five matches, but were beaten at home by Huddersfield Town last time out.

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Manager

Steve Cooper was appointed as Swansea head coach in June 2019, leaving his role as England under-17 coach to take up his first role in club management.

Cooper was a youth coach at both Wrexham and Liverpool before taking up the role of England under-16 manager in October 2014.

He was made manager of the under-17 side the following year and led them to the final of the UEFA European U17 Championship where they were beaten on penalties by Spain.

The 40-year-old then led England to glory at the FIFA U17 World Cup in India, defeating Spain 5-2 in the final with a squad that included Phil Foden, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Rhian Brewster, in October 2017.

He was appointed at Swansea boss last summer and helped the club reach the play-offs on the final day of the season in an impressive first season in charge at the Liberty Stadium.

With Swansea, Cooper has managed 58 matches recording 24 wins, 17 draws and 17 defeats.

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Last Six Games

Lost – Swansea 1-2 Huddersfield Town (Sky Bet Championship)

Won – Swansea 2-1 Millwall (Sky Bet Championship)

Won – Wycombe Wanderers 0-2 Swansea (Sky Bet Championship)

Drew – Swansea 0-0 Birmingham City (Sky Bet Championship)

Won – Preston North End 0-1 Swansea (Sky Bet Championship)

Lost – Newport County 2-0 Swansea (Carabao Cup)

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Last Time We Met

The two sides last met in a competitive fixture back in January 2017 in the EFL Trophy with the Sky Blues triumphing on penalties against Swansea under-21’s at the Liberty Stadium.

City came close to breaking the deadlock when Callum Reilly’s low drive from 20-yards out was tipped behind the post by Gerhard Tremmel diving low to his left.

The hosts then had a chance of their own when the ball fell kindly to Oliver McBurnie inside the penalty area, but the striker could only stab his effort over the bar.

McBurnie spurned another chance in the second half when he was played through by Ryan Blair with Reice Charles-Cook equal to the effort, making a smart stop with his feet.

Swansea were awarded a penalty with 20 minutes left to play when McBurnie was fouled in the penalty area which the striker converted down the middle of the goal to put the home side in front.

However, the Sky Blues equalised with five minutes remaining when George Thomas delivered a dangerous free kick from the left that appeared to be diverted into his own net by Adnan Maric under pressure from City captain Jordan Willis.

Thus, the game headed to penalties with City converting all four of their spot kicks and Charles-Cook impressively keeping out efforts from Botti Biabi and Blair which allowed Ruben Lameiras to score the winning penalty and send the Sky Blues through to the semi-finals.

City would go on to win the competition beating Wycombe Wanderers in the last four and Oxford United in the final at Wembley.

Head-to-Head Record

Sky Blues Wins – 13

Draws – 8

Swansea Wins – 9

Club Connections

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Sam Ricketts

Current Shrewsbury Town boss Sam Ricketts achieved promotion with Swansea before finishing his career with the Sky Blues.

Ricketts began his career with Oxford United and made 48 appearances for the club over three seasons and spent a brief loan spell with Nuneaton Borough in the Conference.

Following his release by Oxford he signed for Telford United and impressed in his one season with the Conference side, making 51 appearances and scoring six goals.

However, after Telford went out of business, Ricketts was snapped up by Swansea boss Kenny Jackett and he helped the Swans achieve promotion out of League Two, and was named in the 2004/05 PFA Team of the Year for his performances, before then helping them win the EFL Trophy the following season.

In his two seasons with the Welsh side, Ricketts made 105 appearances, scoring three goals, which included scoring in the League One play-off semi-finals against Brentford before losing in the final to Barnsley on penalties.

He joined Hull City in July 2006, after the Tigers triggered a release clause in his contract, and helped the club reach the Premier League for the first time in their history, beating Bristol City 1-0 in the play-off final at Wembley.

After helping Hull retain their Premier League status, making 129 appearances in total for the KCOM Stadium club, he left for fellow top flight side Bolton Wanderers.

He would spend four seasons with Bolton, three of which were in the Premier League before the Trotters suffered relegation to the Championship in 2011/12, making 113 appearances, before joining Wolverhampton Wanderers.

With Wolves, Ricketts captained the club as they won the League One title with a record points haul in his first season at Molineux and was named in the PFA Team of the Year for his efforts.

He was loaned to League One side Swindon Town in March 2015 and helped the Robins reach the play-off final, having scored in their semi-final win against Sheffield United, where they beaten 4-0 by Preston North End.

Ricketts would finish his career with the Sky Blues, signing a one-year deal in July 2015 and was appointed captain by then manager Tony Mowbray.

The Wales international made 50 appearances for the club, scoring once, and had his deal extended at the end of the 2015/16 season, but was forced to retire from football in November 2016 after suffering a knee injury.

The defender made 52 appearances for Wales and since retirement has managed both Wrexham and Shrewsbury Town, where he is currently employed.

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Tommy Hutchison

Scotland international Tommy Hutchison made over 300 appearances for the Sky Blues before going on to play in just shy of 200 games for Swansea and later managing the Welsh side.

Hutchison began his career with local side Dundonald Bluebell before signing professional terms with Scottish Second Division side Alloa Athletic.

After three seasons with the Wasps, he moved across the border to Blackpool, joining Stan Mortensen’s side in February 1968.

Hutchison would go on to become a Blackpool legend, making 165 appearances and scoring 10 goals across four seasons with the Seasiders which included promotion to the First Division in 1970.

He was later inducted into the Blackpool Hall of Fame at Bloomfield Road when it was officially opened by Jimmy Armfield in April 2006.

The midfielder moved to the Sky Blues in 1972 and is inducted into the club’s Hall of Fame as one of City’s all-time great players.

He arguably played the best football of his career in a City shirt, winning all 17 of his Scotland caps during his time with the club, appearing at the 1974 FIFA World Cup in West Germany, but was surprisingly left out of the squad four years later.

Nicknamed Mr. Magic by then chairman Derrick Robins, Hutchison spent eight years at Highfield Road making 355 appearances, scoring 30 goals, and was voted the Supporter’s Player of the Season on three occasions.

He had a loan spell with American side Seattle Sounders in 1980, before joining Manchester City in October that same year, helping them reach the 1981 FA Cup final, and scored at both ends in a 1-1 draw at Wembley, before losing 3-2 in the replay to Tottenham Hotspur.

After his spell with the Citizens he played for Hong Kong side Bulova before spending two years with Burnley and joining Swansea in 1985, linking up with manager John Bond for the third time in his career.

‘Hutch’ would spend six seasons with the Welsh side, making 178 appearances, scoring nine goals, and even spent six months as manager in 1985/86 when the club went into liquidation.

He is the oldest player to have played for the Swans, having featured against Southend United in March 1991 at the age of 43 years, five months and 19 days.

Hutchison finished his career with non-league side Merthyr Tydfil spending three seasons with the club, before retiring at the age of 46-years-old having played in over 1,000 first team matches in his career.

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Match Officials

Keith Stroud will be the man in the middle on Tuesday night, taking charge of his fifth game of the 2020/21 season.

He last refereed the Sky Blues back in December 2016, when City were beaten 4-0 in an FA Cup tie at Cambridge United.

This will be Stroud’s 17th season as a Football League referee and he has officiated the Sky Blues on 13 occasions, with City winning three, drawing two and losing eight of those matches.

So far, Stroud has awarded five yellow cards across four matches in the EFL Cup and Championship.

He will be assisted by Jonathan Hunt and Sam Lewis with Leigh Doughty acting as fourth official.


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