Fulham 0-3 Swansea: Sunday Mirror match report
Published 21:31 17/03/12 By MirrorFootball
Gyfli Sigurdsson scored twice to take his tally to five goals in six games as Swansea swept aside sorry Fulham and moved above them into the top half of the table.
The Icelandic midfielder, signed on loan in January, scored in each half before Joe Allen capped a great day for the Welsh side, whose fans celebrated a win double, with their rugby team beating France to complete a Grand Slam.
Swansea now sit eighth in the Premier League and manager Brendan Rodgers was quick to praise his players.
“It was a phenomenal performance,” he said. “I felt this was our biggest game of the season and I said that to the players beforehand.
“After the high of last week in terms of the result and the performance against Manchester City, I didn’t want us to just be a team that raises their performance for the big games.
“We’ve consistently done very well and got good results against the big teams. But today it was a joy as a manager to see that relationship of training going into the game.
“Our ability to control possession was at a real high level. Also the part of our game that isn’t noticed so much was great – the intensity of our pressure.
“To come here and score three goals – and we could have had more – was very pleasing.
“It’s a wonderful day for our supporters. They are incredible, home and away. They are so loud and passionate and really back the players.”
Counterpart Martin Jol was less than impressed by his side’s performance.
He said: “Swansea will always have a lot of possession, even when they play Manchester United or Chelsea. There are two ways to respond, either to press them or drop off, let them play and try to break them.
“We didn’t play like a team and all the players that would normally make a difference were not there.”
The game had started at a frantic pace. Mark Schwarzer saved a firm shot from Danny Graham in the opening minute before Michel Vorm tipped over a blistering effort from Clint Dempsey.
Scott Sinclair then went close twice for Swansea, while at the other end, John Arne Riise and Dempsey fired over the bar from long range.
Sigurdsson almost opened the scoring from a swift counter-attack on the half hour but his shot from 20 yards crept inches wide. But he only had to wait six minutes before getting on the scoresheet.
Pavel Pogrebnyak misplaced his lay-off and gave the ball straight to Sigurdsson, who swept it out to Wayne Routledge on the right wing.
The former QPR winger sent in a cross that cleared the head of Graham in the middle, but Sinclair was at the far post to volley it back across goal where Sigurdsson stooped to nod it over the line.
Jol sent on Damien Duff for the ineffective Bryan Ruiz, but the winger was unable to inspire an equaliser.
Instead Sigurdsson put Swansea further ahead. He picked up a loose ball just over the halfway line and drove towards goal.
Again he played it out to Routledge on the right, and the winger surprised Fulham with a cutback into the path of Sigurdsson, who sidefooted home from 10 yards.
With 13 minutes to go, Philippe Senderos gave the ball away, and Allen cut in from the left and curled a beauty past Schwarzer to add a gloss to the scoreline.
Rodgers was also full of praise for Sigurdsson. He said: “He has slotted in perfectly and is a wonderful lad. The system and the way we play suits him. He is a player that has got a big talent.”