We knew that Swansea City manager Paul Clement was a class act before yesterday’s game and that he’s well respected in the game of football.
But it’s not often you see a manager after a Premier League game be so brutally honest about his team’s performance and then take responsibility for the defeat.
Paul did not like the way his team played against Newcastle and thought they were second best in every aspect of the game.
Paul was talking to Sky Sports immediately after the match in which Newcastle again looked a good team in what was a very close affair.
But captain Jamaal Lascelles scored with a stunning header after 76 minutes to get all 3 points for Newcastle and move us up to 10th place in the Premier League.
Swansea City manager Paul Clement – a class act
Most fans will be pleased if we can finish in 10th place this season but manager Rafa Benitez, who was absent through illness yesterday, will want to do better than that.
This is what Paul Clement said after the game:
“Although the margin of the defeat is small I am more disappointed with our performance.”
“I am not satisfied with the way we played – there was expectation going into the game but we were second best in combats, duels, first and second balls, tactics, in all aspects.”
“I take responsibility for it. It is a performance I am not proud of.” “It is a collective responsibility and I am at the head of that.”
“We had a positive week going into it and I didn’t expect it. We had good training week and the meetings were good. The actual game, what I saw was nothing like I expected.”
“We had a couple of good chances. On another day we could have got something out of it. They kept going but overall it wasn’t good enough.”
“You have to reflect honestly whatever the result, looking at what we could have done better. I think there are a lot of things we could have done better.”
“Newcastle were better than us.”
“Any system can be undone (talking about zone marking) whether it is man-to-man or zonal.”
“Both have strengths and weaknesses.” “It worked well for us last season.”
“We have conceded two from corners this season so the details aren’t right.”
“We don’t need to change how we defend, just go about our defending in a better way.”
We have lost two and then won two in the league – which is exactly the start we made last season in the Championship.
While Jamaal takes the honors for what was a great captain’s performance yesterday, we were again impressed with Mikel Merino in the middle of the park.
This lad is improving with every game, and he’s such a powerful player when he has the ball.
A great team win for the lads in south Wales and spirits of Newcastle fans around the world have been lifted.
Rafa hopefully will be taking the training tomorrow at Benton and even when he’s not on the touchline his magic is there for all to see.
Nice work by Paco Moreno and the coaching staff last week who know exactly what Rafa wanted in yesterday’s game.