Swansea City suffered no repeat of last weekend on their travels this week as Barrie McKay’s powerful strike from the corner of the penalty area in the first half was enough to take home all three points.
Graham Potter welcomed back Jefferson Montero and Wilfried Bony to the substitutes bench which excited Swans fans an hour before kick-off and the Swans boss also brought back Erwin Mulder in goal after Nordfeldt’s troubles at Rotherham last week.
We started off in confident mood and we dominated from the start and once again we saw big chances go begging. McBurnie had a great chance to score his fourth goal in 3 games when he worked the ball into the 6-yard box down the right but his shot was well blocked at the crucial moment.
We were 1-0 just a few minutes later though. Matt Grimes’ passed to Celina low from a corner and his miss-hit was unconvincingly cleared – only as far as McKay who was waiting near the corner of the penalty area and he didn’t hesitate as he struck a beauty of a shot that flew into the top corner like a rocket. It was some goal from the winger who has yet to set the world alight since his Summer move from Nottingham Forest.
— Mkai (@Mkai__) November 10, 2018
Dan James almost doubled our lead when he was sent down the left channel. He was allowed a few yards of space to move inside and curl a shot aimed at the top corner but it was inches wide. The winger should have got another assist though to add to his ever-growing tally in recent weeks when again, he was given space down the left. This time he got to the by-line before sending in a welcoming cross for Celina but he couldn’t direct a shot on goal as his effort from close range went over the bar.
A couple of let-offs for a struggling Bolton Wanderers side and you began to wonder if we’d get punished again for failing to take our chances, as you just knew that our dominance wouldn’t last into the second half.
Bolton’s only decent chance before the break was a long-range effort from 25 yards or more but Mulder was equal to it, stretching an arm up to help the ball onto the top of the bar and out of play for a corner.
Like last Saturday, Swansea’s first-half dominance soon fizzled out in the second half and Bolton came back into the game and pegged us back for long periods. Ameobi really should have made the most from having a yard of space about 8 yards out but his left-footed shot didn’t force Mulder into action.
Around the hour-mark, it was clear that Potter needed to make a change to get a foothold in the game again. Bolton were in control and in search of an equaliser and given our failures at Rotherham, there was an air of inevitability about it.
Potter made his first change after 62 minutes but might not have been the change that some fans were calling for – given that both Montero and Bony were available from the bench. McKay made way for Olsson which allowed Grimes to move into the heart of midfield, playing the holding role which allowed both Fulton and Fer to move further forward. Celina also drifted out to the right in a switch to 4-3-3.
The subs of Montero and Bony came later on – four minutes apart starting with quarter of an hour to go as we were holding on to our slim lead. Bolton lacked quality in the final third and they never really looked too threatening when it mattered close to goal. They were able to get into some good positions but they were never able to make anything of those situations.
The second goal never came but thankfully this time it wasn’t needed as our first-half efforts were enough to get us three points to send us up to 7th and within a point of the top 6.