Monday, 15 December 2014

Swansea vs Tottenham: Player ratings

After such wide criticism of the team over Twitter this weekend, Josh Kilmister gives his opinion on each and every player who featured in a Swans’ shirt this weekend. 

Gylfi Sigurdsson in action against former employers Spurs

Gerhard Tremmel - 6/10

Tremmel was among those of the players criticised after Sunday’s loss, and I hate to say it, but rightly so. We all know that Tremmel isn’t half the ‘keeper that Fabianski is, and that was blatantly obvious throughout the game. The German had little to do in terms of shot-stopping, but it was more his presence in general that had fans worried. An incredibly dodgy punch out from a Spurs corner - that he managed to claim the second time around - just one of the notable mistakes from the stand-in. 

Tremmel also appeared to have very little control of his area compared to Fabianski; this was central to Spurs’ late equaliser. He did make a very good save late on, but it wasn’t enough to encourage a last minute comeback.

Neil Taylor - 7/10

Despite what many others will say, I think Tayls had a fairly good game [I'd agree there - Ed]. He was a little suspect first-half, but that can be said for almost everyone. As the game went on he improved massively, helping keep Spurs out until the death. As well as executing his defensive duties, Taylor deserves some credit for the assistance that he offered to Montero on the left flank. There were a few occasions where Taylor put through Jeff for a counter attack, and their partnership seems to be improving every game.

Ashley Williams - 7/10

After a poor game last week against West Ham, Ash didn’t look his normal self either. His first half performance was poor to say the least; his passing was very much off key, as was his positioning. He seemed to struggle with Spurs’ pressure deep in our half and there were a few times where he dived in, leaving Bartley exposed in the centre of defence. His second half performance was much better, and he looked to be back to his normal dominant self. Neither Harry Kane or Soldado got much of a look in; he as much as anyone will be disappointed not to walk away with three points.

Kyle Bartley - 7/10

Bartley was solid for the majority of the game, but his first half performance - like Ash - wasn’t as good as his second. Something tells me that Monk had a few stern words for the two as they both looked more than competent for the back end of the game. As ever, Bartley carried the ball well into the midfield with very few mistakes, though I think with Fernandez back fit, it’s only a matter of time before he loses his place.

Angel Rangel - 5/10

As much as it kills me to say it, Rangel hasn’t been the same this season as he has been previously. His lack of pace was a real problem against Erik Lamela and it didn’t help his attacking side of the game either. It could be said that he was at fault for Harry Kane’s early opener, as the young Englishman left Rangel for dead inside the box, heading in from a corner (yep, another corner). For a player often praised for his passing ability, he gave the ball away on numerous occasions throughout the game; not his best performance, that’s for sure. [Though he did play a great ball for Routledge for the goal - Ed].

Leon Britton - 8/10

I have a feeling that if this becomes a weekly piece that I write, I can more or less copy and paste Leon’s review every week. Leon done what he does best, creating a link between the defence and midfield whilst offering himself as a third centre back when needed. His sheer determination to make up for other’s mistakes makes him the perfect defensive midfielder, but unfortunately for us he isn’t as young as he once was. The work he puts in to his performances is bound to take its toll, and I’m convinced that Monk’s decision to replace him was for Leon’s benefit, rather than one of his genius tactical substitutions. 

Ki Sung-Yueng - 6/10

Not as impressive as normal today, but everyone’s entitled to a poor game. I say that, Ki wasn’t poor today, not by a long shot; he was just poor by the standards he’s set over the last few weeks. Ki struggled to impose himself in the first half as Spurs pressed high up the pitch, forcing a few errors from himself and the defence. The odd misplaced pass is now seen as strange from the Korean star (with 91% pass completion Ki is ranked 2nd in this regard in the Swansea squad - Amat is first but has played far less football), but his qualities shone through in the second half, and he found his place in the middle of the park.

Jefferson Montero - 8.5/10 (Man of The Match)

Voted man of the match by statistics site WhoScored, Montero can tick off another Englishman from his list of destroyed full-backs, as Kyle Walker’s first Premier League start after a long term injury will not be one he will remember fondly. On another day, Walker would’ve been sent on his way as he struggled to deal with Jeff’s quick feet and lightning pace. Not many wingers have managed to match Kyle Walker’s pace in recent years, but Jeff did that and so much more; and that’s why Jeff wins my vote for man of the match.

Gylfi Sigurdsson - 8/10

Like Leon, I can’t see there being many chances for me to write much of a negative review about Gylfi. If he was out to make a point to his former employers, that’s what he did. His link up play with Bony was impressive as ever, whilst his determination to close down defenders almost paid off. He only had one real opportunity to punish the scrappy defending of Spurs, but his weaker foot couldn’t beat Hugo Lloris from outside the box. 

Wayne Routledge - 8/10

Whenever I call for Routledge to be dropped, he tends to have a good game. This was the case today as two poor performances on the bounce had me certain that Dyer would be starting today; thankfully this was not the case! Monk’s choice to stick with Routledge was rewarded as he linked up with Gylfi, Bony and even sometimes Montero with some intelligent build up play. His persistence eventually paid off as his cross was met by Bony who, on a second attempt, slotted past the France number one. 

Wilfried Bony - 8/10

This man’s movement is simply unbelievable. Fazio and Vertonghen gave Bony an unusual amount of space to work his magic up front, and he eventually got his fourth goal in as many games. An immense piece of trickery almost finished off a well worked Swansea move, but Sigurdsson couldn’t quite get his foot to the ball. He didn’t give the Spurs defence a minutes peace, but might be disappointed that he didn’t add further to his 2014 goal tally of 20 - the best in the Premier League.


Jonjo Shelvey - 7.5/10 (for Britton, 55)

Jonjo has received criticism of late, but his eye for a pass is something you can never doubt. Shelvey made an instant impact in the game, pinging balls in and around the Spurs penalty area. He did however slip up immediately after Spurs’ second goal, which almost lead to a third; but apart from that, a solid thirty-five minutes.

Jazz Richards - 5/10 (for Rangel, 71)

If not for his one mistake, Jazz would be on a solid 7 at least; but that one mistake was big enough to affect his rating. After a poor piece of goalkeeping by Tremmel, Jazz had the choice of hoofing the ball up the field, putting it out, or giving it straight to none other than Ben Davies; guess what he did? Ben gave it straight to Eriksen, who slotted home from eighteen yards. For what it counts, my opinion is that Jazz is still the better of the two right backs we have at the moment.

A very solid performance from the Swans but as we’ve experienced previously, performances don’t always win games. Spurs were scrappy, but we knew they would be before kick-off. Maybe had Lamela or Vertonghen been sent off in the first half it would have been a different story, but it wasn’t to be. 

Like all games, there’s positives to take. Montero is growing as a player every week and Bony’s price tag has been rising since the day he signed his contract. Monk will be hoping for another big performance at The KC Stadium next weekend, where a win is more than possible.

Thanks to Josh for rating the players. Do you agree with his ratings? Who would your MOTM be? Get in touch in the comment section below.