Spurs ‘need to finish in fourth’

Swansea 1 Tottenham 3

Spurs ‘need to finish in fourth’

The Spurs manager led his side to another valuable three points at the Liberty Stadium thanks to goals from Emmanuel Adebayor (two) and an own goal from Chico Flores. Not even a late Wilfried Bony goal could take the shine off a sparkling performance from the visitors.

However, Sherwood was cautious about celebrating too loudly.

“We know there will be tougher tests ahead, but it’s been a good start for me in the league,” he said.

“However, I think if the season was to end tomorrow, the chairman wouldn’t be too happy because we’re fifth. The final league position has to meet the expectations of the club otherwise it’s ‘Goodbye Charlie.’

“The club need to finish in fourth place, they want to finish in fourth place. Anything other than that is going to be a disappointment. Realistically we should be in and amongst it. But it ain’t easy, is it?”

It is certainly a tough call, considering the competitive nature of this season’s top flight. However, for the time being, there is certainly no cause for concern, despite an opening 25 minutes at the Liberty Stadium in which Swansea looked every bit like a side capable of inflicting a first league defeat on Spurs since Sherwood took over at the helm.

The man mountain that is Bony shrugged off all-comers on numerous occasions to bring out the best in Hugo Lloris and even struck the bar with a 30-yard strike that left the French keeper clutching at thin air. Unfortunately, the Swans’ major headache this season has been their failure to transfer their dominance in to goals. Once again, Michael Laudrup’s side were made to pay as Adebayor rose above Flores to convert Christian Eriksen’s deep cross, 11 minutes from half time. It was Tottenham’s first genuine chance and a goal that left Swansea to lament their earlier missed chances.

The confidence quickly ebbed away, as did Swansea’s challenge. The influential Shelvey limped off five minutes into the second half and Bony found himself fighting a lone battle against an increasingly confident Spurs’ back four. And there was worse to come, in the 53rd minute, when Swansea’s Spanish centre half Chico Flores sliced a Kyle Walker cross into his own net.

Laudrup, understandably disappointed by his club’s Premier League demise, dating back to their last victory, against Newcastle on December 4, said: “That’s the way it goes when you are in a difficult moment. But what more can we do? We are playing well, our attitude is good and we had chances.

“It is just not going in for us at the moment. Injuries haven’t helped and we got another one today. We can only hope that Jonjo is not too bad and that one or two more will be coming back next week.”

No problems on that front for Spurs, who made it 3-0, 19 minutes from time. Moments before Adebayor arrived in the nick of time to convert a cross from Danny Rose, Mousa Dembele had fluffed his lines when presented with a one-on-one with goalkeeper Tremmel. Sherwood looked to the skies in disbelief as the Belgian scuffed his shot wide after Aaron Lennon’s exquisite delivery.

Swansea continued to battle in pursuit of a consolation, at least, and when Spurs failed to clear their lines, 12 minutes before time, Bony picked his moment to beat Lloris at his far post. It was his 14th goal of the season but scant consolation for Swansea who find themselves three points, and just as many places, above the drop zone.

SWANSEA (4-2-3-1): Tremmel 5; Rangel 5, Williams 5, Flores 6, Davies 6; Amat 5, Britton 6; Pozuelo 5, Shelvey 6 (Lamah 50,5), Routledge 5; Bony 7.

Subs not used: Taylor, Cornell, Tiendalli, Alvaro, Richards, Donnelly

TOTTENHAM (4-2-3-1): Lloris 7; Walker 7, Dawson 6, Chiriches 6, Rose 6; Bentaleb 6, Dembélé 7; Lennon 6 (Naughton 78,5), Eriksen 7, Chadli 6 (Sigurdsson 66,6); Adebayor 8

Subs not used: Soldado, Holtby, Capoue, Defoe, Friedel

Att: 20,769

Referee: Martin Atkinson (West Yorkshire)

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