Belfast Telegraph

Clement takes confidence from overdue win

Swansea boss Paul Clement celebrated a first Premier League win in two months
Swansea boss Paul Clement celebrated a first Premier League win in two months

Paul Clement called Swansea's first win in two months a "confidence-builder" as a 1-0 victory over West Brom took them off the bottom of the Premier League.

Wilfried Bony smashed home an 81st-minute winner for Swansea to leapfrog Crystal Palace and move to within a point of West Brom and West Ham, who had beaten Chelsea earlier in the day.

The scale of the victory was reflected in Clement's joyous touchline celebration, a measure of the scrutiny the Swansea head coach has been under.

"The celebration was a mixture of frustrations built up over the recent weeks and the elation of the goal at that crucial moment where we were in a great position to go and get all three points," Clement said.

"It was important with West Ham winning that we didn't get set adrift.

"We're right in that pack at the bottom now with these three points. But I don't think it takes the pressure off, it's more about building confidence at a time we really needed it."

Bony fired into the roof of the net from close range after substitute Tammy Abraham had almost got on the end of Ki Sung-yueng's 81st-minute corner.

It was the Ivory Coast striker's second goal in as many league games - the first time he has managed to do that since December 2014.

"I thought Bony was good," Clement said. "We'd struggled to get him in the game early on and West Brom were screening him really well.

"But in the second half we got more balls into him and with others coming on getting closer to him we could make him more of a threat.

"It was a scrappy game, but we've been on the wrong end of enough tight games.

"I think we deserved to get over the line and that's what you have to do when you're in the position we're in."

West Brom's wait for a win goes on, with the Baggies having failed to register a Premier League victory since August 19.

Albion have failed to score in Alan Pardew's first two games in charge and the new Baggies boss admitted he is still searching for the right formula in front of goal.

"I've used every offensive player I've had pretty much, and I still couldn't find a moment," Pardew said after Salomon Rondon had spurned a late chance to equalise.

"My teams have always managed to score. Sometimes you could question my defensive record, but my teams have always managed to score goals.

"We're finding it difficult to create chances, but I wasn't disappointed with the effort and endeavour that we showed.

" It was a disappointing result but in terms of the encouragement there was a lot of effort from the players and our luck will have to come."


From Belfast Telegraph