Swansea take all three points against Norwich with 1-0 win in basement battle

Swansea take all three points against Norwich with 1-0 win in basement battle
Photo: VAVEL UK/Jonny Walsh
Swansea City
1 0
Norwich City
Swansea City: Fabianski, Rangel, Fernandez, Williams (c), Taylor, Britton (Fer 55'), Cork, Sigurdsson, Routledge, Ayew (Gomis 82'), Paloschi (Barrow 46').
Norwich City: Ruddy; Pinto, Martin (c), Klose, Brady (R. Bennett 26'); O'Neil, Howson; Redmond, Hoolahan, Naismith (Mbokani 64'); Jerome (Bamford 64').
SCORE: 1-0, Sigurdsson 61'.
REFEREE: Craig Pawson. Booked: Jerome 13', Brady 17', Taylor 34'.

Anyway, that's all from me and our live commentary. Stay tuned for the full report of Swansea's victory, as well as for the rest of the afternoon's games. Thank you for choosing VAVEL to follow today's game!

Fantastic day for the Swans, especially with Newcastle and Villa losing, whilst Sunderland drew. The Welsh side are now nine points clear of the drop. Sunderland's result, meanwhile, means Norwich are now a point from safety.

Full time! It's the Swans' day as the Canaries' Premier League future looks bleak.

90 - Gomis charges down a ball forward but his persistence doesn't pay off as Norwich go down the other end and Bamford heads over! There will be four minutes of added time.

89 - Barrow bursts into the area, he wants a penalty but the referee says no. Norwich go up the other end and Fabianski is forced into a save at his near post! 

88 - CLOSE! Routledge slices his clearance, it falls to Redmond but he fires wide! Inches wide!

87 - Norwich going for a late push now. It's pinball in the area but Swansea get it away.

86 - Routledge tries to exchange with Taylor but is brought down by Pinto. Referee, somehow, says no to a free-kick though and it's a goal-kick for Norwich.

82 - Change for Swansea as Ayew is replaced by Gomis. 

81 - Rangel loses the ball in his own half and Norwich try to punish, but Mbokani heads over the bar.

80 - Free kick for Norwich is delivered by Hoolahan, but Fabianski claims it with ease. 

78 - Things getting a little bitty now, but Norwich are still in it and Swansea will hope to grab a second to seal the win. The Canaries are pushing forward, but failing to create. Ivo Pinto gets up this time but pushes over Cork in the box and concedes a free-kick.

74 - Lovely work from Barrow, who beats his man and knocks in a good ball, but Sigurdsson can't direct it into the back of the net!

73 - Fer tries to release Ayew, but the ball is just too heavy and Ruddy gets there first.

70 - Norwich with another chance against the run of play as Bamford finds Hoolahan - he doesn't shoot, tries to find Howson, but it's cleared!

69 - Chance for Norwich as Bamford gets forward but his shot is blocked by Fabianski at his near post. 

68 - Wonderful work from Routledge! He somehow keeps the ball in and dances down the byline, but Ruddy makes a save from a tight angle. 

67 - Sigurdsson whips in a corner but Ruddy collects it. He spots Bamford up top and releases the ball quickly, but the Chelsea loanee is offside.

64 - Attacking changes for Norwich as Mbokani and Bamford come on for Jerome and Naismith.

It's a lovely move and it ends with a lovely finish from Sigurdsson and Swansea lead! It's certainly been coming.

GOAL! Sigurdsson breaks the deadlock!

57 - Booking for Redmond now as he brings down Fer. Free-kick falls to Barrow at the back post, but he volleys wide.

55 - Fer is on for Britton, and the former Canary is met by a chorus of boos from the travelling fans.

54 - Wild back pass from Norwich ends with the Canaries being pinned back with a number of corners for Swansea - none of which end in anything productive however.

50 - Martin is all over Barrow and he's booked - then there's another foul moments later by Naismith. Norwich clear again and Williams is down injured.

46 - Bennett booked for bringing down Routledge, Sigurdsson puts the free-kick into the box but it's easily cleared by Norwich. 

And we're underway for the second half!

Half time sub for Swansea - on comes Mo Barrow, replacing Paloschi. Ayew to play through the middle.

Finally, Bournemouth are the only away team to have scored in the 3PM kick offs today so far. However, it was a Newcastle player who scored the goal, with Steven Taylor putting into the back of his own net as the Magpies trail 1-0.

Everton are also 1-0 up at home, with Romelu Lukaku scoring against West Ham. However, they have been reduced to 10 since, with Kevin Mirallas booked twice.

There's been at goal at Stamford Bridge, where Bertrand Traore has put Chelsea ahead against Stoke City. They lead 1-0.

As for half time scores, three of them are goalless - including this one at the Liberty. At Southampton, Sunderland are holding the Saints, whilst Manchester City are surprising drawing with Aston Villa.

Today's early kick-off, the North London derby, ended 2-2 at White Hart Lane. Ramsey put Arsenal ahead, but a red card for Coquelin before the hour put them on the back foot. Alderweireld and Kane were able to put Spurs ahead from there, but Alexis scored an equaliser to salvage a point for the Gunners.

Let's take a quick trip around the Premier League for the latest scores.

Half time at the Liberty. It's been a tame first half from both sets of attackers, with Jerome's low strike the best opportunity so far, albeit one that only brought a comfortable save out of Fabianski. Goalless here.

45+3 - Ayew breaks and he's brought down before Rangel fires over. The Ghana international wants a free-kick on the edge of the box - he's hacked down by Klose but the referee gives nothing! Certainly a foul - could have been a penalty. Very close.

45 - Jerome races forward and fouls Fernandez as three minutes are put up by the fourth official.

44 - Fabianski pushes away Jerome's effort and Routledge commits a foul when chasing the loose ball. Free-kick is whipped into the box but the flag is raised for offside and Swansea will have a free-kick now in their own box.

40 - Surprise spectator at the Liberty today is new FIFA president Gianni Infantino! He's not been treated to much goal-mouth action, however, as we near half time.

35 - Nearly! Taylor bursts into space and drills the ball into Routledge, but the winger loses his footing in the box and his shot is blocked.

33 - Swansea dominating this affair as a well-worked passing move almost allows Paloschi in. 62 per cent possession for the hosts so far. Meanwhile, Taylor is in the book for a tackle on Redmond.

27 - O'Neil dives into Cork and gives away a free-kick. Sigurdsson's delivery, however, is collected by Ruddy.

26 - He can't continue and Ryan Bennett has to replace the set piece taker. Big blow that. Martin moves to left back and Bennett takes his place in the centre of defence.

25 - Brady is down receiving treatment now. Norwich will hope that's not serious, as he's been whipping in some great free-kicks already.

24 - Chances continue to be at a premium as Ayew heads wide of the mark from far out.

21 - Routledge fouls Redmond and Norwich have a free-kick on the left wing. Brady puts it in and Fabianski claims it again.

17 - Another yellow, this one for Brady after a challenge on Rangel. Good position for Swansea to get the ball in, he does that but Ruddy punches clear. Ayew is down in the aftermath.

15 - Naismith is clattered by Williams and, after Jerome is brought down, the referee brings it back. Good chance for Brady to put another good ball in, but he can only find the gloves of Fabianski.

13 - Yellow card for Jerome after an arm into Fernandez's face. No intention but the referee brandishes the card.

11 - Free-kick for Norwich is delivered well by Brady - Klose goes to connect but it just evades his head and the ball runs wide of Fabianski's goal.

7 - Swansea quick on the break again as Routledge and Rangel link up. Throw-in to the hosts now deep in Norwich's half.

6 - Paloschi is played in at one end but mishits his shot, then Redmond hits the target at the other end after cutting inside of Taylor. It's an easy save for Fabianski though.

5 - Sigurdsson harries O'Neil but he acts well under pressure to get the ball forward. Redmond tries to find Jerome, but he can't/

2 - Swansea trying to get off to a good start as Cork delivers a cross, but no-one is there and it's a goal-kick for Norwich.

And we're off!

Meanwhile, there's two changes for Norwich from their defeat at home to Chelsea in midweek. Gary O'Neil and Steven Naismith return to the starting line-up.

Six changes for Swansea as Fernandez, Rangel, Taylor, Britton, Sigurdsson and Paloschi all return to the starting eleven. Ki Sung-Yueng is out with an ankle knock, the club have confirmed. 

Norwich bench: Rudd, Mbokani, Bamford, Jarvis, Dorrans, Mulumbu, Bennett.

Swansea bench: Nordfeldt, Naughton, Amat, Fer, Montero, Barrow, Gomis.

And today's two benches...

Norwich XI to face Swansea: Ruddy; Pinto, Martin (c), Klose, Brady; O'Neil, Howson; Redmond, Hoolahan, Naismith; Jerome.

Swansea XI to face Norwich: Fabianski, Rangel, Fernandez, Williams (C), Taylor, Britton, Cork, Sigurdsson, Routledge, Ayew, Paloschi.

The teams have been officially announced. Stay tuned for more.

Predicted Norwich XI (3-4-3): Ruddy; Martin, Klose, R. Bennett; Ivo Pinto, O'Neil, Howson, Brady; Redmond, Mbokani, Hoolahan.

Predicted Swansea XI (4-2-3-1): Fabianski; Rangel, Fernandez, Williams, Taylor; Britton, Cork; Ayew, Sigurdsson, Routledge; Paloschi.

If he does not recover in time, Alan Curtis will assume managerial duties and will hope to have similar success to that he enjoyed on Wednesday. He could even put out a similar team, despite making six changes to a more regular XI we saw at Spurs, given how well the Swans performed in midweek.

Swansea, on the other hand, have a fully-fit and firing squad - but could be without their manager. Francesco Guidolin was admitted to a London hospital with a chest infection earlier this week as the Swans visited Spurs and Arsenal. The club said that he would be well enough to stand in the dugout this weekend at the Liberty, but things could yet change.

The visitors may be without Gary O'Neil and Robbie Brady in their attempts to do the double over Swansea though, as the two had a nasty clash of heads against Chelsea in midweek. Both sustained rather gruesome injuries, but were able to complete the rest of the game nonetheless. They are bound to be assessed thoroughly by the medical staff ahead of this game though, to make sure there are no signs of concussion.

In the reverse of this fixture this season, Norwich were victorious by just a 1-0 scoreline, with Jonny Howson on target for the Canaries in one of just six wins they have managed in 2015-16.

The season before, the score read 3-2 to Norwich in another terrific game. That time, it was Swansea who took a first half lead as Danny Graham broke the deadlock on 23 minutes. However, three goals in 15 second half minutes saw Norwich turn things around - Anthony Pilkington on the scoresheet in between two goals for Holt. Graham pulled one back for the Swans from the spot in the 87th minute, but the hosts could not complete the comeback in the little time that remained.

Grant Holt celebrates after scoring in Norwich's 4-3 win over Swansea back in 2012. | Photo: Reuters
Grant Holt celebrates after scoring in Norwich's 4-3 win over Swansea back in 2012. | Photo: Reuters

The Canaries had raced into a 3-0 lead by half time, with Steven Whittaker, Sebastien Bassong and Grant Holt all scoring. Michu and de Guzman narrowed the deficit to one before the hour, but Robert Snodgrass' 77th minute effort ensured the three points belonged to his side, even with Michu's stoppage time second.

Goals galore has been the name of the game when these two clash in South Wales, and last season was no different. In the 2012-13 season, we were treated to a seven-goal thriller at the Liberty, but it was the away fans who went home happy after watching their side win 4-3.

Recent form might have Swansea as the favourites for this game, but history does not. The two have met seven times in the Premier League, and Norwich have only lost one of those encounters. That, however, was when these two last met at the Liberty, as Swansea came out 3-0 winners thanks to two goals from Jonathan de Guzman and one from Routledge.

Unsurprisingly, with protecting leads proving to be very difficult for both, these two have managed to keep just one clean sheet apiece in 2016. Norwich's came on January 2 in a 1-0 win over Southampton, whilst Swansea's was on January 18 as they beat Watford by the same scoreline.

Swansea themselves have earned a reputation for surrendering leads lately though too, having done so in three of in their four games prior to the Arsenal win. Two of those saw them lose 1-0 advantages to draw 1-1, whilst the latest one resulted in defeat as Tottenham Hotspur came from behind to win 2-1.

That was Norwich's eighth defeat in their last nine games, with that one exception a 2-2 draw at home to West Ham United. Whilst the Hammers are in great form and the result was a good point, the Canaries should have emerged victorious given that they led 2-0 as late as the 73rd minute.

Norwich, on the other hand, did not fare as well against London-based opponent during the week. They welcomed Chelsea to Carrow Road but were downed 2-1, with Kenedy opening the scoring after 40 seconds to immediately put the hosts on the back foot. Diego Costa then doubled this lead on the stroke of the half time - albeit controversially, as he looked to be offside. Nathan Redmond halved the deficit in the second period, but his side could not complete the comeback.

However, a win at the Emirates on Wednesday lifted their spirits and put them six points clear of the drop zone - which Norwich currently sit in. Swansea were on a run of four winless games going into the midweek clash, but shocked Arsenal with a superb comeback victory. Joel Campbell put the Gunners ahead after 15 minutes, but Wayne Routledge equalised before half time and Ashley Williams would win the game after the break.

The Swansea side that graced the top flight last season is much different to the current one though. The South Wales outfit have endured very tough times this season, with them becoming well entangled in the battle at the bottom of the standings.

Last season, when the Canaries were fighting their way out of the Championship, Swansea met the Yorkshire-based official three times and had a good record under him. They won two of the three games - beating Burnley 1-0 and Stoke City 2-0 - but lost the other 1-0 at Selhurst Park, falling to Crystal Palace on the final day of the season.

Pawson also took charge of Norwich's 3-0 victory over West Bromwich Albion in the League Cup in September, with Matt Jarvis and Kyle Lafferty on target before Sebastien Pocognoli scored an own goal in the final minute of the 90.

Craig Pawson will take charge of today's game, with it to be the 22nd time he has done so in the top flight this season. However, he has only met one of these two sides once all campaign, and that was Norwich when the Canaries fell to defeat by a 1-0 scoreline away at Chelsea in November.

Hello and welcome to VAVEL UK's live coverage of this afternoon's Premier League fixture between Swansea City and Norwich City. This crucial game in the relegation race will be played at the Liberty Stadium, with kick-off at 3PM GMT. My name is Ameé Ruszkai and I'll be taking you through all of the day's events as they unfold!