Flying shame for City as lapse costs them dearly
Bryan Gunn was left to rue another defensive lapse as City proved once again that they appear to suffer from a fear of flying. Having taken the quickest route to south Wales courtesy of the club's directors, City did just what they did the last time they let the plane take the strain - against Blackpool last month - they lost.
Bryan Gunn was left to rue another defensive lapse as City proved once again that they appear to suffer from a fear of flying.
Having taken the quickest route to south Wales courtesy of the club's directors, City did just what they did the last time they let the plane take the strain - against Blackpool last month - they lost.
Jason Scotland put Swansea ahead on 29 minutes, and although striker Alan Lee soon one back with his first goal for the club, Scotland scored from the penalty spot five minutes into the second half to help push Norwich back into the drop zone.
It was the build-up to the penalty, rather than Gary Doherty's foul on Scotland, which clearly rankled. Lee was nutmegged way out on Swansea's left flank by young Joe Allen, who headed towards the area and slipped the ball to Scotland, who could almost hear the whistle before it was blown, drawing the Norwich skipper into a challenge from which there was no way back.
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“We got ourselves to half-time level, and a lot of positive things were said in the dressing room at half-time, and like we did against Sheffield Wednesday (last week), we went out in the third minute of the second half and shot ourselves in the foot,” said Gunn.
“The ball went out wide and it came back in too quickly and Scotland is a crafty player and managed to sidestep Gary Doherty - and penalty kick.
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“I think we have given away too many penalty kicks this season and we've not had enough ourselves.”
“All the good talking and all the hard work you have done in the first half to get back into the game or keep yourself level goes out the window and you're chasing it then, and you don't want to be chasing a game against Swansea with their passing game, they are always liable to catch you on the break and David Marshall made a couple of excellent saves to keep us in it and it always gave us a chance right through to the last minute.”
The hosts' tactics' prompted Gunn to change his starting line-up, with Lee ploughing a lone furrow, David Mooney operating on the right and Ryan Bertrand on the left, with Adam Drury recalled at left back.
“What we tried to do in the first half was stifle Swansea,” explained Gunn.
“They play a system that allows them to get possession. We decided to give them possession up until a certain distance away from our goal and we looked quite comfortable in the first half.
“The higher we pressed the game the better we looked and the boys worked at that in the first half and we got ourselves back level after Scotland's goal.
“We tried to make changes and tried to be positive and we got ourselves a couple of opportunities but our final ball wasn't good enough. Set plays, which we work on and which we set up yesterday- we didn't get enough from them. The goalkeeper was catching too many, so that delivery wasn't as good as it could have been.”
Darel Russell, back in midfield after a two-match ban, was treading on thin ice after a 22nd-minute booking for a foul on Leon Britton was followed by a lecture just before the break after a foul on Andrea Orlandi.
Gunn resisted the temptation for change at half-time, but admitted he had been aware of the need for caution.
“It was always a sort of doubt at the back of the mind, but we did say to Rusty to be careful in the second half and obviously it wasn't until late in the game that we decided to change it and get some more fresh legs on and see if we could get something from it,” said Gunn.
“Certainly, as Darel does, he will make challenges - he got himself booked and it was just him being careful. It was one to keep an eye on.”