Swansea 2-1 Sheffield Wednesday: Rhian Brewster strikes again as Andre Ayew converts from the penalty spot to keep the Swans’ playoff hope alive
- Rhian Brewster put Swansea in the lead after 52 minutes with a strong volley
- Andre Ayew doubled Swans’ lead from the penalty spot in the 66th minute
- Atdhe Nuhiu scored a header in extra time for Wednesday as a consolation
- Steve Cooper wins by up to four points behind the playoff places
Swansea kept their sleek playoff hopes for Sky Bet Championship alive with a 2-1 win over Sheffield Wednesday thanks to goals from Rhian Brewster and Andre Ayew.
Steve Cooper’s side struggled in the first half as they struggled to adjust to their head coach’s new formation, but they improved after the break.
Brewster opened the score before Ayew’s penalty doubled the advantage.
Rhian Brewster scored again when Swansea City kept their playoff dream alive with a 1-0 win
The Liverpool borrower continued his impressive form in South Wales with a volley
Wednesday manager and Swansea great Garry Monk saw Atdhe Nuhiu pull out in extra time, but it was too little, too late for the visitors.
In the defensive crisis of Swansea, Kyle Naughton was forced to step in as a central defender for Wednesday before winger Jacob Murphy got three nice early chances.
The second saw Adam Reach’s cross turn slightly from Naughton to Murphy at the back post, but with enough space he could only spoon over the crossbar.
Minutes later, Murphy was back on target. This time, his powerful low shot was saved by Freddie Woodman.
Andre Ayew doubled Swans’ lead from the penalty spot after Conor Roberts delivered an error
Players in Swansea and Sheffield Wednesday compete in the air in the visitor box
Swansea operated with a three-man defense with Connor Roberts and Wayne Routledge as fullbacks. They looked fragile, confused, and too narrow, especially on the left, and Murphy took advantage of them.
The home team’s strangeness at the back was accompanied by a lack of an attacking threat and Jay Fulton got a bad tackle on Julian Borner.
Alessio Da Cruz got a shot blocked by Marc Guehi and he also headed over, but the Owls failed to take their chances in the first half. Brewster’s bad free kick summed up Swansea’s struggles.
Swansea’s tenacity with their shape during the break finally paid dividends after the break, with Ayew receiving a free kick before the hosts moved on.
Roberts crossed from the right, Fulton pushed through, and Brewster reacted fastest when he shot home to open the score.
Sheffield Wednesday winger Jacob Murphy appears to want to cross as Jake Bidwell defends
Swansea City’s Andre Ayew fends off Dominic Iorfa from Wednesday as the hosts attack
In the 63rd minute, Swansea exchanged Routledge for center back Mike Van Der Hoorn for his first appearance since January 2 and soon made it 2-0 for the home team.
Roberts tried to reach the end of Jake Bidwell’s cross, but was tested by Reach, who was reserved and then replaced, and Ayew increased the penalty for his 16th goal of the season.
The fact that Wednesday was two arrears was a huge disappointment for Monk, especially after the first half of his team.
Liam Palmer seems to disappear under pressure from Swansea striker Rhian Brewster
Brewster should have made it 3-0 when he entered the goal from a brilliant Naughton pass, but he could only hit the side net.
The Liverpool tenant left the field late and used his shirt as an improvised sling to treat a shoulder injury.
Nuhiu headed a cross from fellow Wednesday substitute Kadeem Harris to halve the deficit, but Swansea held on.
Swansea XI: Woodman, Roberts, Naughton, Guehi, Bidwell, Grimes, Fulton, Ayew, Gallagher (Byers 69 ‘), Routledge (van der Hoorn 63’), Brewster (Cullen 88 ‘).
Unused Subs: Mulder, Cabango, Kalulu, Dyer, Dhanda, Celina.
Goals: Brewster 52 ‘, Ayew 66’.
Sheffield Wednesday XI: Wildsmith, Palmer, Iorfa, Borner, Bannan, Murphy, Lee (Hunt 46 ‘), Luongo (Nuhiu 69’), Reach (Harris 67 ‘), Wickham, Da Cruz (Rhodes 79’).
Unused Subs: Dawson, Hughes, Odebajo, Pelupessy, Shaw.