Swansea City: Stoke win gives club momentum, says boss Paul Clement

By Dafydd PritchardBBC Wales Sport at the Liberty Stadium
Paul Clement congratulates his players after the 2-0 win over Stoke
Paul Clement congratulates his players after the 2-0 win over Stoke

Swansea City head coach Paul Clement believes his side's win over Stoke could provide the momentum they need to secure Premier League survival.

The Swans beat Stoke 2-0 on Saturday to end a six-match winless run.

Hull City's victory over Watford kept Swansea in the relegation zone, still two points adrift of the Tigers and safety.

But asked if momentum was back with his side after their triumph over Stoke, Clement said: "I think it is."

He added: "It's the first time I've called it a must win and I was right. If they [Hull] had won and we hadn't, the gap would have gone to five points with four games left. It would have been very difficult for us.

"Now although the points difference hasn't changed between us and them, what has changed is we've put behind us the poor run of form which saw us pick up very few points in the last six games and we hadn't been performing that well either.

"Today's changed that, and that's important psychologically."

Victory gives Swans momentum - Clement

Prior to beating Stoke, Swansea had lost five of their previous six Premier League matches, having won five of their first eight following Clement's appointment in January.

They arrested that slide on Saturday, as goals from top scorer Fernando Llorente and Tom Carroll gave the Swans their first victory since March.

"I feel more positive. It's a vibrant dressing room, everyone knows they've put in a good shift physically, they played well tactically, technically they played well," said Clement.

"Hopefully it will give us that impetus to go on and finish really strongly.

"We are two points behind Hull. They're in the driving seat but we're right behind them, breathing down their necks and we're going to try and do that right until the very last game."

Fernando Llorente celebrates his goal for Swansea against Stoke
Fernando Llorente's early goal against Stoke was his 11th of the season

Britton's return

Saturday's win over Stoke saw Swansea captain Leon Britton make his first appearance since December.

The 34-year-old's lack of match fitness was apparent in the early stages but he grew into the match and earned a standing ovation when he was substituted in the second half.

"I think it's right to give him a special mention," said Clement.

"They're the first minutes he's played under me. The way he's been as a professional, continued to get behind his team-mates, trained really well every day.

"I really looked to him today to help the team and he did it brilliantly. He played with a lot of maturity, ran himself into the ground, couldn't run any more at the end and got the cramp which is normal if you haven't played regular matches.

"It was a real captain's performance from him."

Swansea's remaining fixtures

30 April : Man Utd (a), May 6: Everton (h); 13 May: Sunderland (a); 21 May: West Brom (h).

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