English Premiership

Ayew rescues point for struggling Swansea

2017-12-23 20:10
Jordan Ayew (Getty)

Cape Town - Swansea remain rooted to the foot of the Premier League table, despite coming from a goal down to draw 1-1 with Crystal Palace at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday.

Roy Hodgson's side had the better chances in a goalless first half and they took the lead 15 minutes after the restart with a penalty from Luka Milivojevic.

But the Swans got back into the game thanks to a stunning strike from Jordan Ayew, who almost scored again soon after equalising, although they had to settle for a share of the spoils.

The hosts showed plenty of endeavour in the first half without threatening, while Wilfried Zaha was causing them all sorts of problems.

Lukasz Fabianski was called into action early on when he stopped Scott Dann's header on the line from a third-minute corner, before a mistake from Federico Fernandez on nine minutes led to a fantastic save from the Polish keeper after Andros Townsend cut inside from the right and hit a swerving shot towards to far corner of the net.

A rare foray into the final third from the Swans saw Tom Carroll pick out the run of Sam Clucas, who found Tammy Abraham, but the striker's shot was blocked and Roque Mesa fired wide on the rebound with 20 minutes gone.

Clucas was then caught napping on the ball by Zaha on 29 minutes and the winger fed Ruben Loftus-Cheek, whose shot curled just wide of the right post from 14 yards out on the left.

A Palace breakaway on 41 minutes presented a chance for Zaha from Townsend's cross on the left, but the Ivory Coast international steered wide of the right post on the stretch.

It remained 0-0 at the break and up until the 60th minute when the Eagles were awarded a penalty for Fernandez's foul on Loftus-Cheek inside the box on the left, with Luka Milivojevic going straight down the middle to convert from the spot.

Abraham almost found an instant response for the Swans as he blazed over from a tight angle on the right a minute later, while he forced a sharp save out of Julian Speroni from close range at the near post on 65 minutes after running onto Luciano Narsingh's flick on the right.

Zaha should perhaps have doubled the visitors' lead four minutes later when he was played in on the left by Yohan Cabaye, but he side-footed straight at Fabianski from 12 yards out.

Swansea caretaker boss Lee Britton went to his bench for inspiration and substitute Ayew delivered with brilliant equaliser on 77 minutes, the forward flashing a shot into the left corner of the net from 20 yards out after his quick feet created space outside the box.

Ayew nearly repeated the feat two minutes later as he cut inside from the left and ran adjacent to the 18-yard area before curling an effort inches wide of the right post.

Speroni made a brave block in stoppage time to prevent Abraham from connecting with Nathan Dyer's dangerous cross from the right and snatching a late comeback win.

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West Ham United v Manchester United, London Stadium 13:30
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