|Swansea City 2 v 3 Ipswich Town|
Saturday, 6th October 2018 Kick-off 15:00
Hurst: It's Been a Long Time Coming
Saturday, 6th Oct 2018 18:27
Town boss Paul Hurst admitted that not too many people would have expected the Blues’ long wait for a win to come at Swansea, particularly after they had gone a goal down in only the eighth minute. However, the Blues staged a turnaround to lead 2-1, then after the Swans had equalised grabbed a winner as the game ended 3-2.
“It’s been a long time coming and probably unexpected coming here today,” Hurst said. “We would certainly have been big underdogs and then to go 1-0 down early in the game.
“Probably not too many people would have seen that result coming, but big credit to the players for their efforts which were needed against a very good team that cause not only us but a lot of other teams a lot of problems having watched them.
“We had to ride our luck a little bit at times but I don’t think we’ve always had that on-side so I’m not going to complain about that too much.
“But at the same time we looked we could score a few goals today. There were other situations that we had that could have added to the three goals as well.”
Hurst had praise for lone striker Freddie Sears: “We spoke about how Swansea play and I think when you win the ball back, if you are willing to look forwards you can get in off of that and I thought we did that at times.
“He’s a very clever player in terms of his movement. I’ve seen somewhere that the second one has been given as an own goal, which seems a bit harsh.
“As far as I’m concerned he scored, whether the records say that or not. But he was outstanding, worked hard but also used his brain at times - when he wouldn’t have been able to get the ball then conserved some energy but he was a good outlet for us.”
Asked what the overriding emotion was in the dressing room afterwards, he said: “Tired, in all honesty because a few of the lads are saying that’s one of the hardest games they’ve played.
“But I’m not going to take anything away from Swansea, I think they’re a very, very good team.
“They’ll be disappointed with the final ball or final shot, execution but clearly I’m worried about my team, about how they played and I thought they put their bodies on the line, the work-rate was there and it needed to be.
“And also there was quite a lot of character shown, going 1-0 down early on, then being pegged back, so it was a big test and one that you only get if you’ve got a group of players that are willing to work hard and be committed to the cause, which they clearly were.”
Hurst admits there’s a sense of relief after finally tasting victory at the 13th time of asking with Town in all competitions.
“We can stop asking the question about when that victory’s going to come and I really hope we don’t have to wait as long next time to have that feeling you have at the end of games,” he said.
“Those final minutes seemed like hours, in truth and I think they thought we were messing around with the substitute but genuinely that wasn’t the case.
“For some reason they thought it was Freddie but it was always going to be Gwion so that added another minute onto it. I think, if you’re honest, it was a relief when that final whistle went.”
Hurst says he’s well aware that having got that first win there’s plenty of hard work ahead.
“We’ve looked at other results and a lot of them [around us] have won,” he added. “A few teams are falling down but I think the bottom three from the start of play all won.
“We know it’s a tough league and nothing changes for us but it’s great we have that off our backs as a group and as a club.
“It’s a while now until our next game with the international break. I would rather carry on playing but I don’t think some of the players will feel that way because there were a few tired limbs in there.
“There’s that feeling of relief and I think emotionally they will be a little drained. With a long journey it’s not a bad thing on that side. It’s a couple of weeks now until that next game.”
Regarding Andre Dozzell, who played 80 minutes of his first competitive first-team start since the opening day of last season, Hurst said: “I thought he did well. He brought a calmness on the ball and picked some nice passes.
“We thought it would be one of our hardest games and it proved to be that, so credit to him for his performance.
“He used brain power to sometimes not chase when he didn’t have to and, as much as we want to try and get a press on teams, that was difficult today.
“We could try and do it from a start point but after that we had to be very disciplined and play from there.
“He’ll be pleased to get back out there and I think he brought some quality on the ball to us that we needed.”
Swansea manager Graham Potter was philosophical about the defeat, believing there were positives to be taken from the match despite the result.
“I thought we started really well, got a good goal and then pushed and pushed for the second,” he said.
“Really good momentum, good attacking play and then we conceded a goal from not too much, which has obviously knocked us back. It’s a bit of a learning experience for us that one.
“And then the second one goes in quickly as well, so then you’re looking for the response of the players.
“I thought we kept going throughout, but credit to Ipswich they always carried a little threat on the transition, Sears was dangerous.
“But the spirit of the players, we created chances, opportunities, did everything, the effort was fantastic, I thought.
“Whether it was a third game in a week [that had an impact], we got ourselves back in and then to concede in the manner that we did for the third that we did was disappointing and in the end the age old [adage], if you concede three goals it’s hard to win football matches is the reality, so we have to take it.
“There were a lot of positives in the match but ultimately we’ve come away with nothing and we’re disappointed with that.”
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