Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Paul Clement aims to connect four wins to boost Premier league survival hopes

Paul Clement has prepared for the weekend visit of Burnley accepting the importance of a four-game block on Swansea's Premier League survival prospects.

Swansea were bottom of the league with 12 points when Clement was appointed at the start of January, with daunting fixtures against Arsenal Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea among his first seven games.

But Clement has doubled Swansea's tally in that time to move them above the relegation zone.

And with relegation rivals Hull, Bournemouth and Middlesbrough to come after Burnley's visit to the Liberty Stadium on Saturday, Swansea hope to capitalise on a kinder run of matches in the next few weeks.

"We are all very aware of the run we have coming now with the three games in March and Middlesbrough at the start of April," head coach Clement said.

"We have come off the back end of a difficult run of games and picked up a good amount of points against teams in and around us.

"That is what we are going to have to do on Saturday.

"We're very aware that this a crucial period for us, this run of four games, but we are really only focusing on getting a result against Burnley."

Swansea are seeking to bounce back after losing 3-1 at league leaders Chelsea last weekend.

The gap to the relegation zone was then cut to two points by Leicester's 3-1 victory over Liverpool on Monday night.

"I don't think the tension and stress has increased or decreased," Clement said.

"This is a very important game against Burnley, one we are striving to win.

"We have won our last two home games, against Leicester and Southampton, arguably teams we were in with a shout of doing better against than others we have played in that spell."

Clement also confirmed that Swansea hope to extend the stay of assistant manager Claude Makelele at the Liberty Stadium.

The former France midfielder, who worked with Clement at Chelsea and Paris St Germain, joined Swansea in January on a short-term deal until the end of the season.

"We have not had discussions about Claude staying, but I don't think they will be too far away," Clement said.

"Claude is very focused on his job and helping me and the players to be successful.

"He's enjoying it here, he comes in every day with a lot of energy, a positive attitude and a smile on his face.

"Those are the kind of characters and personalities we need around us at the moment."

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph