Match Report: Swansea City 2-1 Manchester United

Summer signing Andre Ayew scored and then turned provider, as Swansea City came from a goal down to beat Manchester United at the Liberty Stadium.

Swansea-vs-Manchester-United

After a goalless first half, Juan Mata caught the Swansea backline napping and applied a simple finish to give United the lead.

Ayew then drew the Swans level, as he found himself in space to head home from close range. It was then his beautifully weighted through ball that picked out his strike partner Bafetembi Gomis, who slid the ball home to earn Garry Monks’ men all three points.

It was the Reds who settled quicker in Wales, as Memphis curled an early freekick arching low around the wall and bounced awkwardly for Lukasz Fabianski who tipped the ball to safety.

Midweek hat-trick hero Wayne Rooney then had a chance to open the scoring, finding himself through on goal. Ashley Williams tracked the United captain well though and read his attempt to cut inside, averting the danger.

Swansea then applied some pressure with Ayew picking out the run of Gomis, only for the Frenchman to thrash his shot well wide of the mark.

A well worked freekick then saw the home side go agonisingly close, as Jonjo Shelvey deceived the defence electing to pass the ball into Gomis whose flick fell nicely for Gylfi Sigurðsson whose effort ran just wide of the goal.

Gomis then went closer still, as a great display of strength and pace saw him make space in the box, feinting to shoot before stabbing an outside of the boot effort against the post of Sergio Romero’s goal.

A small flurry of yellow cards saw a tight and tactical half draw to a close, with the teams still locked together at 0-0.

The deadlock was broken soon after half-time, as Juan Mata popped up at the back post. Luke Shaw whipped the ball across the box and a Rooney miscue at the near post saw the ball catch Williams by surprise at the back stick and allow Mata to side foot home for his 50th Premier League goal.

The game was then nearly put out of Swansea’s grasp as a Memphis cross from the right sliced off Williams’ shin and looped over the head of Fabianski forcing him into a fingertip save.

Then came the key tactical change, as Monk replaced Wayne Routledge with Ki Sung- Yueng and pushed two up top, with Ayew accompanying Gomis in attack.

The change then paid dividends. Williams won possession in defence and strode towards the half-way line, knocking a through ball to Sigurðsson who had space to steer in a cross. The ball fell beautifully for the unmarked Ayew, to arch his head and direct the ball past Romero, ending his 100% clean sheet record.

bafetimbi

The goalscorer then turned provider sliding a well-crafted ball into the path of Gomis’ arching run, to play the ball through the hands of Romero, who will feel he should have done better.

Once in front, the Swans never looked threatened, as United became sloppy in possession. A lack of options was obvious as Marouane Fellaini came on and became the target for a more direct style. This was despite having Javier Hernandez on the bench, a decision adding fuel to rumours of an imminent move to Bayer Leverkusen for the Mexican.

A wasted set piece optimised their day, as a free kick was played back to defence instead of being swung into the box, with the resulting long ball finding the tall Belgian in an offside position. Rooney’s frustration was visible as Swansea held on to continue their unbeaten start to the campaign.

Their renaissance under Monk refuses to stop with summer signing Ayew looking one of the most astute signings of the transfer window. The squad’s depth is also obvious, as the side recorded the victory without arguably their best player, with Ecordorian winger Jefferson Montero looking on injured.

For United, the defeat may see Louis van Gaal dip into the transfer window, with the squad suffering a Premier League striking crisis. Wednesday’s Champions League win looked to put them on the right track, but the Reds are yet to find that fluidity in the league and the side may need a new attacking threat to match the potency of the Sir Alex years.

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