Bony back among the goals in Stoke win

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

Ivory Coast striker Wil­fried Bony ended a 10-month goal drought with a brace against for­mer club Swansea City as Stoke City’s re­vival con­tin­ued with a 3-1 win in Mon­day’s Premier League clash.

Both goals for the 27-year-old Manch­ester City loa­nee were set up by an­other for­mer Swansea favourite, Joe Allen, with Al­fie Maw­son also putting through his own net as Stoke claimed a third win on the bounce.

“It is crazy that my first goals come against my ex-team, it is dis­ap­point­ing for them but that is how foot­ball hap­pens,” Bony told Sky Sports. “I have missed some chances but I knew the goals would come. Ev­ery game I push my­self.”

Swansea, who had lev­elled in the first half through Wayne Rout­ledge, have made their worst start to a Premier League sea­son with just five points from 10 matches. It is also the first time they have gone nine games with­out a win.

“There is no easy so­lu­tion to get­ting con­fi­dence back,” Swansea man­ager Bob Bradley told Sky Sports. “When you are go­ing through a bad stretch you have to have be­lief.

“It was 1-1 at half-time but we didn’t start the sec­ond half in a way that sug­gested we could win the game,” added the for­mer United States coach, who has picked up just one point from three games in charge af­ter re­plac­ing Francesco Guidolin.

Stoke are un­beaten in five matches and climb to 12th, five points clear of the rel­e­ga­tion zone, while Swansea are sec­ond from bot­tom and five points adrift of safety. It took less than three min­utes for Bony to make his mark, pounc­ing to prod home from in­side the six­yard box af­ter Allen’s mishit half-vol­ley for his first goal in 23 matches for club and coun­try. How­ever, the Swans lev­elled within five min­utes as Rout­ledge did bril­liantly to head home Gylfi Sig­urds­son’s su­perb cross.

The hosts were im­pres­sive go­ing for­ward and Scot­land in­ter­na­tional Char­lie Adam-mak­ing his first Premier League start of the sea­son-hit the post with a fan­tas­tic curl­ing ef­fort.

Stoke suf­fered a blow in the 26th minute as Swiss play­maker Xher­dan Shaqiri had to go off in­jured and was re­placed by Egyp­tian young­ster Ra­madan Sobhi. Adam then con­jured up an­other splen­did ef­fort but was this time de­nied by the other post.

The wood­work was prov­ing to be a very ef­fec­tive 12th man for the vis­i­tors as it once gain came to the res­cue af­ter Allen’s as­tute pass found Marko Ar­nau­tovic, who rounded goal­keeper Lukasz Fabi­an­ski only to see his ef­fort can­non back off an up­right.

Bony blazed over af­ter be­ing teed up by Ar­nau­tovic at the start of the sec­ond half but 19year-old Sobhi was the cre­ator as the hosts re­stored their ad­van­tage in the 55th minute.

Sobhi pro­duced a de­light­ful piece of skill in­side the box af­ter a su­perb pass from Ir­ish vet­eran Glenn Whe­lan and his shot was di­verted into his own net by Maw­son.

It was an­other bril­liant Stoke move which pro­duced the killer third goal 17 min­utes from time. Ar­nau­tovic de­liv­ered a sub­lime back­heeled pass to find Allen, whose shot was saved by Fabi­an­ski. How­ever, the Welsh in­ter­na­tional re­acted bril­liantly to help the ball across to Bony, who ap­plied the fin­ish. — AFP

Stoke City 3 Swansea City 1

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