Match Zone

Cooper reveals what his side needed to improve on in first half against Hull City

Image for Cooper reveals what his side needed to improve on in first half against Hull City

Swansea City boss Steve Cooper was obviously delighted to get the season off to a winning start at the Liberty Stadium but in the post-match press conference he revealed what his side didn’t do well enough in an underwhelming first-half that saw Hull City go into an early lead.

In similar style to the weekend before in the home friendly against Atalanta, the Swans conceded an early goal and struggled for most of the half. They couldn’t co-ordinate their attacking play effectively and there was a clear lack of pace as Cooper opted to start Celina on the left with Byers behind Borja through the middle.

Cooper said:

“Falling behind early at home is never an easy scenario, especially in the first game of the season.

“We were just okay in that first half. I was not too bothered about being 1-0 down.

“I know the longer it goes the more it is an issue, but we controlled all the game we just did not play to the levels we want to play and can play at.”

Talking about what his side could have improved at, Cooper said his side needed to play forward “a lot quicker” and there were spaces that they didn’t exploit.

In particular, Nathan Dyer found himself in a lot of space down the right but we couldn’t make as much use of it as we should have.

“Even though we dominated possession I felt we could have been a lot firmer in our attacking play. We could have played forward a lot quicker and there were lots of spaces we could have exploited and we did not do it quick enough.

“So we didn’t even mention the scoreline at half-time, it was more a case of saying ‘We are doing okay lads, and we are better than that.

“We gave them some simple messages and they got back to the level they should be at fairly quickly and we were more than good for the result.”

Thankfully though, just like last Saturday against Atalanta, we came out like a different team and within minutes of the restart we were 2-1 in front. Borja Baston netted a rare goal to draw us level, heading the ball over the goalkeeper and Mike van der Hoorn also nodded home to give us a 2-1 lead.

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