Argyle celebrate scoring at Swansea


Swansea City 0

Argyle 1
Whittaker 18

Morgan Whittaker returned to familiar territory to score the only goal in a classic away performance from Argyle and the long wait for a victory on the road is over.

Whittaker struck the winner on 18 minutes, as the Greens played with superb efficiency and belief in a first half that left the Swans scrabbling to find an answer to their attacking conundrum.

The Pilgrims remained steadfast after the break, despite a late onslaught, and secured three massive points to perfectly set up a busy February of league and cup commitments.

Argyle Head Coach Ian Foster made three changes from the FA Cup draw at Leeds United, Alfie Devine, Darko Gyabi and Adam Forshaw all returning to the side, with Caleb Roberts, Adam Randell and Callum Wright dropping to a bench that also included new signing Lino Sousa.

After an early spell of sparring from both teams, a Swansea free-kick caused brief ructions in the Argyle defence, Ben Cabango lashing the loose ball over the bar from a decent position.

The Pilgrims responded with a swift surge, Whittaker’s shot deflected wide after precise inter-play with Ryan Hardie. The Swans asked the next question, Jerry Yates feeding a pass to Brazilian winger Ronald, who sliced his shot well wide.

Good defending from Ashley Phillips thwarted the next Swansea foray and Argyle were in front moments later. First, a dipping effort from Whittaker, playing against his former club, was tipped over by Carl Rushworth.

The corner was taken short to Devine, who slipped a pass to Adam Forshaw, then on to Whittaker and he added to an impressive scrapbook of goals with a typically powerful strike from the edge of the penalty area.

Jamie Paterson pinged an effort over the bar for the hosts but Argyle looked generally comfortable in defensive areas. When the Swans did move the quickly into the box, Bali Mumba was in the right place to execute a superb last-ditch tackle.

The lively Ronald then picked out Yates for a shot superbly repelled by the legs of Conor Hazard. Argyle saw out the remainder of the first period with the calm assurance that is becoming an early hallmark of the Foster reign.

A stooping header from Yates was narrowly off target in the first act of the second period before the Pilgrims settled back into a compact defensive shape, as the Swans became increasingly frustrated by their lack of opportunities.

At the other end, Argyle continued to look a threat and a cross from Hardie picked out Devine, who saw his blocked shot fall to Mumba. The Swans managed another scrambled block and the rebound strike from Mickel Miller was too high.

There was fantastic confidence in Argyle’s work, with Devine living up to his name in midfield. Substitute Przemyslaw Placheta rifled a left-foot drive over the bar before another pinged pass from Devine picked out the onrushing Miller for a shot into the side-netting.

Alert goalkeeping from Hazard ensured a deflected cross was clawed away from the line before Foster freshened up the troops with the introduction of Ben Waine and Adam Randell for Hardie and Devine.

Placheta, impressive since coming on, had another effort that flashed over the bar before Waine pinched the ball from Cabango and was unlucky to see his shot blocked.

Swansea conjured their beat chance six minutes from time, Liam Cullen smashing a fierce drive against the bar from just outside the box, as Argyle turned to the bench, Matty Sorinola and Lino Sousa replacing Mumba and Miller.

Argyle faced an inevitable barrage in the closing stages, Forshaw and Hazard both digging out crucial clearances before the all-action Phillips fended a dangerous cross.

Five minutes of added time felt like a lifetime but Hazard produced one more top save to thwart substitute Charlie Patino, and a fabulous three points for Argyle.

Swansea City: 22 Carl Rushworth; 4 Jay Fulton (17 Przemyslaw Placheta 56), 5 Ben Cabango, 8 Matt Grimes (capt), 9 Jerry Yates (20 Liam Cullen 68), 12 Jamie Paterson, 14 Josh Tymon, 23 Nathan Wood, 26 Kyle Naughton, 31 Ollie Cooper (18 Charlie Patino 77), 35 Ronald (24 Charles Sagoe Jr 77). Substitutes (not used): 1 Andy Fisher (gk), 7 Joe Allen, 19 Mykola Kukharevych, 33 Bashir Humphreys, 50 Filip Lissah.

Booked:  Cabango 22, Cooper 71.

Argyle: 21 Conor Hazard; 2 Bali Mumba (29 Matthew Sorinola 86), 9 Ryan Hardie (23 Ben Waine 75), 10 Morgan Whittaker (capt) (5 Julio Pleguezuelo 90), 14 Mickel Miller (3 Lino Sousa 86), 16 Alfie Devine (20 Adam Randell 75), 17 Lewis Gibson, 18 Darko Gyabi, 22 Brendan Galloway, 26 Ashley Phillips, 27 Adam Forshaw. Substitutes (not used): 25 Callum Burton (gk), 11 Callum Wright, 34 Caleb Roberts, 35 Freddie Issaka.

Booked: Hazard 71, Gyabi 76, Miller 82.

Referee: Sam Allison

Attendance: 16,965