The Swans return to the Liberty Stadium on Tuesday night having completed their sixth away win of the season at Tranmere on Saturday and they know that a win against Hartlepool will see them return to the top of the league.
It has been over a month since the postponement of this match following the tragic death of Michael Maidens. Since that time, the Swans have won just one of four league fixtures in November but have kept themselves in touching distance of the top but really do need to work on their home form.
Just two wins have come in seven league outings at the Liberty this season – a total contrast to an excellent away record which shows a return of 21 points from 9 games. But with five home games in the next seven league encounters the Swans really do have the chance to put this right and push on from the strong base that they have given themselves. Indeed, from those five home games – Hartlepool, Northampton, Southend, Cheltenham and Leeds – you would say that we should be aiming for a minimum double figure point return to press our claims of glory come next May.
It has been a long 8 weeks since the Swans recorded a league win at the Liberty – a 2-1 triumph over Swindon – although that statistic is masked by just, incredibly, 2 league games in that period at the venue.
It seems almost certain that Roberto will stick to a very similar side that faced Tranmere on the weekend although there may well be a temptation to tweak the formation to see if we can break down teams at Liberty. Maybe the introduction of a 5th midfielder (Britton?) whilst reverting to three at the back may make a difference and give us the edge that we need.
Hartlepool trio Gary Liddle, Andy Monkhouse and Ben Clark are again likely to miss out through injury.
On-loan defenders Godwin Antwi and Eddie Nolan should continue while Matty Robson (calf) is fully fit again.
Prediction wise it is difficult to see beyond a Swans win with some of that thought process assisted with a viewpoint that we have to sooner or later transfer our away results into some product of home form – at least I would rather it that way then the other way around – I am sure everyone else would as well.
Whatever happens, let’s be behind the team during the game and see if we can lift them to the result that we all want.
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