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‘We threw everything at them’ – Holden

Dean Holden admitted that the Robins had to throw everything at a quality-packed Swansea City side but ultimately, they came away from South Wales with nothing to show for their attacking intent.

Connor Roberts’ late first-half strike settled the Sky Bet Championship fixture at the Liberty Stadium.

City’s fought back, including a creative-minded triple substitution and Famara Diédhiou went closest to equalising when his penalty smacked the post.

Interim Head Coach Holden said: “We wanted to come here, get on the front foot and play our style and the players have done that. We had a big chance in the first half with Nahki Wells’ header. They scored right on the stroke of half-time, which defensively was a poor goal to concede from our point of view.

“The game then swings with the penalty miss. It wasn’t about protecting mini-unbeaten runs or anything, we played with plenty of risk second half, we’ve had the majority of possession and loads of efforts around their goal but we haven’t worked their goalkeeper enough on the day.”

Holden looked to get City back into the game with a switch that he admitted was risky though he hailed the players for how they battled on.

“We had a big chance before that [the Swansea goal] and if you don’t defend to the maximum you get punished. They’re a good team packed full of good players with a great style of play. They’re dangerous on the counter-attack as proved in the second half, we played with risk in terms of personnel and formation change to get the win. We took a risk in them counter-attacking us, but the boys threw themselves in front of everything and I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

But the Robins will look back on the second-half penalty as an opportunity missed.

Holden continued: “If you take the penalty and score it’s a different game. The boys kept going, it was attack versus defence in that part of the game and we needed the attacking players on the pitch, so we took the middle centre-half out, went with an extra player higher. It was risky but the boys gave everything and on the day the game was decided by one goal to them.”

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