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Carvalhal leads Swans to victory in first game

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By Jonathan Twigg

SWANSEA City gave new manager Carlos Carvalhal a winning start when two late goals at Vicarage Road saw them defeat Watford 2-1 to briefly lift them off the foot of the Premier League table.

The travelling support were ecstatic after Jordan Ayew, who struck the cross bar from 25 yards early in the game, equalised with eight minutes left to play.

Those supporters were delirious when substitute Luciano Narsingh pinged home the winner after home Brazilian goalkeeper Heurelho Gomez couldn’t control substitute winger Nathan Dyer’s pile-driver from the edge of the box.

The ‘Jack Army’ had given unstinted support for the new manager and their team whilst distain was voiced over the state of the Club at Boardroom level and requiring the removal of Huw Jenkins, once the Messiah of their Club.

Swansea did for large parts of the game look like a side who play without confidence, their individual mistakes compounded as they are a side continually having to absorb pressure. It helps when the side have ‘a big pole in their goal’ as Lukas Fabianski kept the game live with another authoritative performance.

Just a minute before his side’s equaliser he saved when one on one with Andre Grey, certainly a turning point in the game and as history tells us perhaps a season defining moment.

An Andre Carrillo header from close range after 12 minutes opened the scoring after Fabianski had saved well from Stefano Okaka exposing the frailties that have underpinned Swansea all season.

New man Carvalhal recognised the areas of concern, subtly tinkering with the Swansea formation and personnel to combat it.

Swansea were guilty of dropping off the ball as the Hornets constantly created space and 2v1 situations, at times not showing the desire to win the ball back.

Centre backs Alfie Mawson and Federico Fernadez were forced apart as Kyle Naughton was found wanting all game.

Restored to the side was Renato Sanchez, the Portuguese star on loan from Bayern Munich; having struggled all season to cut the mustard in the Premier League he was caught in possession as the tackles were crisp, but he grew with the trust heaped upon him by his compatriot Carvalhal.

The manager also recognised turning defence into attack has been an area of concern all season and it was noticeable on loan striker Tammy Abraham had supportive players on the few occasions play was in the home danger area.

Saturday was an improvement as the Swans had nine shots at goal, four on target and forced eight corners and importantly they scored the two goals needed to secure three points.

In no small part the result was galvanised by replacement striker Ollie McBurnie, the gangly legs of the young Scotsman, a throwback to ‘yesteryear’ with socks barely holding his shin pads. He endeared himself to choristers in the visiting end with a whole hearted performance bearing a smile, epitomising his enjoyment of the game despite the dire situation facing his Club.

where luck matters in the battle for safety in the Premier League which will go to the wire in the business end of the season come May.

Eleven points separate the lower half of the table as Swansea entertain Tottenham Hotspur tonight, with Liverpool and Arsenal arriving for evening fixtures after they travel to Newcastle.

As January ends, the Swans have a run of games against opposition in and around the relegation battle. Any run equivalent to that of Crustal Place, nine undefeated would catapult the Carvalhal’s men into a safe position; the new Messiah may well have been born.

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Haverfordwest County officials to visit Atlético Osasuna for strategic discussions

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NEXT week, Haverfordwest County A.F.C. chairman Robb Edwards and COO Beccy Nuttall will travel to Spain to visit Club Atlético Osasuna. During their visit, they will engage in high-level discussions with Osasuna’s upper management, focusing on community and fan engagement strategies.

In April, both Haverfordwest County A.F.C. and Club Atlético Osasuna were appointed to the Executive Board of the Union of European Clubs (UEC), an international organisation established in April 2023. The UEC was founded to provide a voice to the 92% of professional football clubs that often go unheard. The Union aims to democratise decision-making processes in European football, ensuring that each club has a vote and that the destiny of the sport is not determined solely by the wealthiest clubs on the continent.

“We look forward to this meeting with Osasuna and hope our collaboration with other clubs continues to grow,” said Edwards. The upcoming visit underscores the commitment of both clubs to fostering stronger ties and working collaboratively to shape the future of European football.

The discussions will likely cover a range of topics, from enhancing fan experiences to developing community outreach programmes, reflecting the shared values and objectives of both clubs within the UEC framework.

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Free multi-sports events for 5-7 year-olds in Haverfordwest

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SPORTS mad youngsters aged 5-7 and those looking to try out new sports and activities are invited to free multi-sport sessions in Haverfordwest.

The sessions run from 4.15pm to 5pm every Thursday during term time and are based on the Tennis Courts at Haverfordwest High VC School.

All sessions are free and there are a wide range of activities to try.

The sessions are run by Sport Pembrokeshire Staff and assisted by Young Ambassadors from Haverfordwest High

Local clubs also take part to run sessions and provide information on how to continue with any sport.

Parents/Carers who would like to sign children up for the session are required to complete the online form.

Dan Bellis of Sport Pembrokeshire, said: “It is great to see so many young people enjoying Sport and being physically active.

“The multi-sport sessions are great as they allow youngsters to try out so many different games and activities which really helps them to learn and develop.”

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Bike It 100: Kilgetty gears up for charity cycling event

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CYCLISTS from across the country are gearing up for the Kilgetty Bike It 100, a charity non-competitive cycling sportive set to take place on Sunday, 28th July 2024. Organised to support the Paul Sartori Foundation and Haverfordwest High School’s South Africa Rugby Tour 2025, the event promises a fun, friendly, and challenging day on the bike.

Participants can choose from three scenic routes of varying difficulty: 50.5 miles with an elevation of 3,400 feet, 77.8 miles with an elevation of 5,284 feet, and the full century route at 101.7 miles, climbing a total of 7,428 feet. Each route is meticulously planned with GPS guidance, direction markers, and designated water stops to ensure a safe and enjoyable ride.

Early bird entries are priced at £35 and are available until 31st May. Post this date, if slots remain, the entry fee will increase to £45. All participants will receive a commemorative Welsh slate medal upon completion. In addition to the ride, the event features organised outdoor BBQs, coffee stops, and well-earned drinks available for purchase at the finish, courtesy of Kilgetty Sports & Social Club.

The sportive has been a tremendous success in previous years, raising £12,000 in 2021 and 2023. Organisers hope to exceed this amount in 2024, bolstered by the community’s continued support and enthusiasm.

For more details and to register, participants can visit the British Cycling website or scan the QR code on the event poster. Queries can also be directed to [email protected].

Join us for a day of cycling through the beautiful Pembrokeshire countryside, all while supporting two fantastic causes. Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to ride, enjoy, and make a difference. Secure your spot today!

For more information, visit British Cycling Event Details.

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