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Monk salutes Swans

21 Feb 2014 07:02:26

Monk salutes Swans

Swansea head coach Garry Monk hailed his players following what he described as a "wow" performance against Europa League last-32 opponents Napoli.

Although the Swans were held 0-0 at home, they dominated the Liberty Stadium clash and were unlucky not take the spoils.

"What a performance that was from us," Monk said.

"Napoli are one of the top teams in Europe, so to put a performance like that on...I said to the players afterwards the word was 'wow'.

"It is a great confidence boost for the players. I guess the only disappointment was that we didn't score a goal.

"I thought we deserved at least a couple of goals. There was some fantastic goalkeeping, and maybe a bit more clinical finishing would have done it, but apart from that the boys were magnificent.

"All I worried about was us. I said before the game about putting a performance in we can all be proud of and I think the players more than did that. They can be really proud of themselves.

"It was important that we started well and showed our intent. We were on the front foot, and that got the crowd with us.

"We kind of needed a goal. It makes our job a little bit more difficult going out there, but we have got nothing to lose when we go there next week. The pressure is on them (Napoli)."

Monk has only been in charge for four games after taking over from Michael Laudrup, but his reign shows a win, two draws and just one defeat.

"We have competed with Napoli once, and we can definitely compete with them again," he added.

"We have to be aware it is a different environment, a very hostile one, but what an experience for us to have. To be in with a shout, I guess that's all we could have asked for.

"To be in a good position with a good chance of progressing, that's all you can ask for."

Swansea's performance also drew praise from Napoli manager Rafael Benitez.

Benitez said: "A draw is a good result. It was not an easy game.

"I have seen a lot of games Swansea have played and we know they play high tempo.

"It is a different pace and intensity to Italian football and I was trying to explain that to my players beforehand.

"We had two chances in the first 10 minutes, which could have changed everything, but in the end, we have to give credit to Swansea."


PA

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