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Michu absent as Swans aim to secure Europe League progress at Kuban

Dyer
Squawka News

Kuban – Swansea

Date: Thursday 7th November 2013

Venue: Kuban Stadium

KO: 17:00

Swansea City know that a win against Kuban Krasnodar on Thursday could see them qualify for the second round of the UEFA Europa League.

Michael Laudrup’s side travel to Russia for their Group A encounter aware that a victory, alongside a Valencia triumph over St Gallen, will see them qualify for the round of 32 with two games to spare.

Kuban v Swansea stats

Team News

Kuban

Kuban will be looking to maintain the momentum established on the back of successive victories in the league – including a derby success against FC Krasnodar over the weekend.

Former Liverpool and QPR frontman Djibril Cisse is likely to pose their biggest attacking threat once again, with the Frenchman having converted the dramatic spot-kick awarded at the Liberty Stadium a fortnight ago.

Swansea

Michael Laudrup is without key man Michu for Thursday’s clash with Kuban. The Spaniard has an ankle injury while midfielder Jonjo Shelvey has also not travelled for personal reasons.

Swansea will be boosted by the news that left-back Ben Davies is available again after recovering quicker than expected from an ankle injury.

The Welshman will travel with a squad also missing Garry Monk (knee) and midfielder Pablo Hernandez (thigh).

Recent Form

Kuban v Swansea stats

Swansea won 3-0 in Valencia on matchday one, before beating St Gallen 1-0 at home in their next fixture.

Kuban, meanwhile, lost 2-0 to both opponents, leaving Viktor Goncharenko’s side with much to do in the second half of the group stage if they are to have any chance of progressing.

The two sides met in Wales a fortnight ago, with the game ending in a 1-1 as a late penalty from Djibril Cisse denied the hosts victory.

Players to Watch:

Kuban – Djbril Cisse

Kuban Krasnodar’s main threat will come from former Liverpool, Sunderland and QPR striker Djibril Cisse.

The 32-year-old scored a late equaliser, and the club’s only goal of the tournament, to deny Swansea three points in their last meeting.

Djibirl Cisse stats

Swansea – Wilfried Bony

Wilfried Bony will be expected to lead the line in the absence of Michu in this match. The Ivorian forward has scored once already during Swansea’s maiden Europa League campaign, and I expect we could see a few more goals as the Welsh side take on Kuban.

His performance score of 44 points is significantly lower than that of Michu’s (116), and his form has reflected this. His form in the Europe hasn’t been inspirational, but with just one full 90 minutes to his name, an opportunity in the first team could see him flourish. This fixture is Bony’s opportunity to prove himself to Laudrup, keep your eyes peeled!

Wilfried Bony stats

Prediction

Swansea will be eager to secure three points and secure qualification to the knock-out stages, and it’s fair to say, bottom-placed Kuban provide the best opportunity to achieve this. It’ll be tough for Laudrup’s team travelling to Russia, especially off the back of the weekend’s defeat to Cardiff, but the players are made of stern stuff and I’m sure they will secure a win that the fans are anticipating.

Kuban 0-2 Swansea


Edited by Staff Editor

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