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Swansea V Chelsea at Liberty Stadium : Match Preview

Updated 12 Apr 2014 13:01:00

Swansea V Chelsea at Liberty Stadium : Match Preview

Swansea V Chelsea - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.


Monk wants to keep Williams

Garry Monk wants Swansea and Wales captain Ashley Williams to remain with the Barclays Premier League club "for as long as possible".


Williams, 29, has just over a year left on his existing Swansea contract and Italian heavyweights Napoli - the Swans' Europa League conquerors this season - are among those thought to be tracking him.


"What he does for the club, I would have him here for as long as possible," Swansea head coach Monk said.


"He has been linked with clubs for a few years - it is what happens with good players. He's an important player that, as a club, we should keep as long as possible.


"He is a good guy who cares for the club and wants the best for us. I know he is happy here and I don't see a problem.


"I haven't had a conversation about his future. I speak to him frequently, but it's about the football, things we can improve and the defensive side of things, giving him things what he can take on to the pitch to influence the rest of the guys."


Williams will be an integral part of Swansea's plan to beat title-chasing Chelsea at the Liberty Stadium on Sunday, when a win for Monk's men would effectively erase any lingering relegation fears.


The game comes just five days after Chelsea booked a Champions League semi-final place by knocking out Paris St Germain, and Monk is fully aware of the challenge that awaits.


"I don't buy we could catch them cold after midweek," he added.


"The players they have through the squad are top-class players. I am sure they will make changes, but whoever comes in is top-class.


"They are not pushing for the title for no reason. They have experience and class all over the pitch. It's an extremely tough game, but a challenge we are looking forward to and have to relish.


"The journey this club (Swansea) has been on and fighting for is to be on this level, to compete against these sort of teams, and we have to make sure we continue that."


Monk has reported no new injury worries ahead of Sunday's Liberty Stadium clash.


Chelsea forward Eden Hazard is likely to miss out with a calf injury sustained against Paris St Germain on Tuesday night.


Mohamed Salah and Nemanja Matic are available after being ineligible in Champions League competition, while midfielder Ramires is back from a three-match domestic ban following his dismissal in the controversial loss at Aston Villa.


Demba Ba, who scored the goal which took Chelsea into the Champions League semi-finals on Tuesday night, could start a first Premier League game since October after being used mainly as a substitute this term.


Jose Mourinho has called on Chelsea to end their three-match losing streak on the road by demonstrating more of the togetherness that saw them to a famous win over Paris St Germain in midweek.


The Blues travel to Swansea on the back of defeats to Aston Villa, Crystal Palace and PSG in successive games on their travels, and need to stop the rot to keep their Barclays Premier League title hopes from receding further.


Chelsea looked much improved from those three defeats as they beat PSG 2-0 at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday to secure an away-goals win that tees up a Champions League semi-final with Atletico Madrid.


Looking ahead to the match at the Liberty Stadium, Mourinho said: "They are a good team, they play good football.


"Especially at Swansea it is never easy and Chelsea knows that better than other teams.


"They still need the three points, they are not in big danger like other teams but they still need a couple of points to stay in the Premier League and of course they will try to get points out of this game."



PA

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