Swansea held at home by play-off chasing Coventry
Coventry’s hopes of bridging the gap to the play-off places took another dent as they were held to a goalless draw at the Swansea.Com Stadium.
That made it five dropped points at the start of April and they dropped one place into the bargain. The only recompense for Coventry is the gap to sixth is still three points.
Swansea boss Russell Martin stuck to the team that had pulled off a remarkable south Wales derby triumph at Cardiff in the previous game following a 99th-minute winner from Ben Cabango as his side went in search of three wins in a row for the first time in six months.
The Sky Blues arrived hoping to put an end to a wretched record against the Swans, having not won a game between the sides since 1981. Mark Robins also wanted his team to recover from their 4-0 home defeat to Stoke, which ended a run of nine games without a loss.
As expected, Swansea dominated the ball in the opening quarter and a Ryan Manning cross in the seventh minute was headed into the side-netting by Harry Darling.
Coventry were content to press and try to hit their hosts on the counter-attack and had the two best chances of the opening half.
After 18 minutes, former Swansea man Viktor Gyokeres received a short corner, turned his man at the byline and then pulled the ball back to the edge of the six-yard box to give defender Callum Doyle the chance to shoot. His left-footed shot was on target, but saved by the feet of Andy Fisher in the home goal.
Fisher pulled off an even better save in the 34th minute after Manning had gifted the ball to Gustavo Hamer 25 yards out with an awful back pass.
As the Republic of Ireland wing-back put his head in his hands, Hamer drove forward unopposed to the edge of the box for a one-on-one with Fisher, but the Swansea goalkeeper won the battle with a great left-handed save.
Swansea’s best moments in the first half came from a Liam Walsh shot that hit the post from an offside position, and when Olivier Ntcham and top scorer Joel Piroe let rip with shots that went over the bar.
The home side had two great opportunities in the opening minutes of the second half to break the deadlock.
Firstly, a Manning cross from the left was volleyed goalwards by the impressive Walsh and Darling blasted the rebound over the top when well placed six yards out.
Moments later, Piroe found himself free on the penalty spot and nudged his shot past the on-rushing Ben Wilson, but just past the left-hand post.
Coventry hit back with good runs into the home box and shots from Hamer, that required a save, and Ben Sheaf that did not. Then, Matt Godden squandered a golden chance 18 minutes from the end after a defensive error.
Ntcham forced a great save out of Wilson with a 30-yard thunderbolt before Piroe failed to tap in from close range.
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