19 September 2023

Swansea boss Michael Duff saw ‘positive signs’ in last-gasp draw

19 September 2023

Michael Duff insisted there are “positive signs” for Swansea despite them not winning a league game since he took over as boss.

A 1-1 draw at QPR, who rescued a point with Lyndon Dykes’ stoppage-time header, continued a frustrating start to Duff’s reign.

They are third from bottom of the Sky Bet Championship table after seven matches.

Duff, who took over during the summer following Russell Martin’s departure for Southampton, said: “It’s frustrating for the players and for me but there were positive signs.

“In the first half-an-hour we were good and that’s how I want it to look. We need to build a foundation.

“I know it sounds silly, but the stats will tell you that teams are not playing through us and we’re creating chances. You have to start with that.

“We’ve had a couple of false dawns, but today we showed spirit and character and the shape was good.

“I’ve said to the players that if we can guarantee that shape, togetherness and spirit then we’ve got the foundations. It’s about sticking to the process.”

A win for the Swans would have been a much-needed boost following Saturday’s 2-0 defeat by arch-rivals Cardiff.

It would have also eased the pressure on Duff, who is already feeling the heat from frustrated fans.

“The Saturday game magnifies it because of who it is,” he said.

“We’ve explained to the players why it happened. We worked on things and then they do their own thing. That doesn’t work.

“But today we stuck to the task. That was a positive, but we’ve got to win games.”

QPR boss Gareth Ainsworth was not content with the result despite the late equaliser.

Ainsworth was convinced Josh Ginnelly’s early opener should not have stood and that his team deserved to win the game.

“No, I’m not happy. The Swansea goal is handball,” Ainsworth said.

“The referee missed it and the assessor has said they couldn’t see it without VAR – but his hand’s out.

“The rub of the green’s going against us at the moment. We deserved more from that game.

“I will add, though, that we must hit the target more. We must work the opposition keeper more. We’re creating chances and we need to take them.

“Lyndon’s header was that moment of brilliance in a game where we should really score more goals.

“We’ve got to be better at getting on the end of things. But we are creating chances and that’s a good thing.

“At the final whistle you saw seven or eight boys just collapse on the floor because they’ve emptied the tank again.

“Disappointed we didn’t get more out of tonight, but it would have been an absolute travesty had we not got that point.

“We’re creating plenty of chances but we’ve got to start finishing them off now.”

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