Cle­ment ad­mits his fu­ture is not in his own hands after Swans’ lat­est de­feat

Wales On Sunday - - SPORT ON SUNDAY - AN­DREW GWILYM Foot­ball Cor­re­spon­dent an­[email protected]­

PAUL Cle­ment de­liv­ered a scathing as­sess­ment of him­self and Swansea City’s cur­rent plight after suf­fer­ing a 10th Premier League de­feat of the sea­son at Stoke, and ad­mit­ted his fu­ture is not in his own hands.

It is a re­sult that will only add to the pres­sure and scru­tiny on Cle­ment, who barely six months ago led the club to safety from a seem­ingly hope­less po­si­tion.

And Cle­ment de­liv­ered an as­ton­ish­ing per­for­mance at his post-match press con­fer­ence, de­scrib­ing his goal-shy side as “tooth­less” and say­ing they de­serve to find them­selves bot­tom.

The 45-year-old head coach in­sists he can turn around an in­creas­ingly des­per­ate sit­u­a­tion, but his body lan­guage after the de­feat in the Pot­ter­ies ap­peared to be­lie a man at the end of tether.

Swansea had plenty of ball in the sec­ond half against a Stoke side who were there for the tak­ing, but could not carve out much in the way of clear-cut chances.

“It’s the same thing. We’re a tooth- less team,” Cle­ment said.

“For a team in the Premier League, you look at our pos­ses­sion statis­tics and I think we’re around mid­dle of the or­der.

“De­fen­sively, al­though they were a poor cou­ple of goals to­day, we’re OK. Of­fen­sively we’re nowhere near good enough, we don’t cre­ate enough, we don’t score enough. That’s our big­gest is­sue.”

He added: “When I am scathing about my team I am also scathing of my­self. It is not me point­ing the fin­ger and say­ing ‘it is his fault, or it is his fault’.

“It is a col­lec­tive ef­fort. I can­not

win with­out the play­ers. So I am be­ing more self-crit­i­cal be­cause I have to be bet­ter and get more out of this team.”

Cle­ment stated he be­lieved he can once again turn things around for the Lib­erty Sta­dium club, but his body lan­guage - with emo­tions still run­ning high after the fi­nal whis­tle - did not echo those words.

“Of course I do, of course I do,” he said, when asked if he wanted to be given time.

“As you know those kind of things are very much out of the hands of the man­ager or a coach. That will al­ways be down to the chair­man and the own­er­ship to make those de­ci­sions if the sit­u­a­tion is go­ing in a really bad di­rec­tion and you can’t see any chance of chang­ing it.

“I be­lieve I can (change it). I showed last year I am ca­pa­ble of work­ing at this level with 29 points over 19 games.

“It was a big ef­fort, it is nowhere near as good this sea­son. I am the same person, we have a slightly dif­fer­ent group of play­ers but the most im­por­tant thing is to find a way to play bet­ter. “

When asked how he could solve such issues in short or­der, he replied.

“Only through what I did last year. We have a group of play­ers with no chance of chang­ing them, we have to fo­cus on what we have got.

“The play­ers that I have and the play­ers I am work­ing with. First and fore­most I am a coach, I work with the play­ers on the train­ing pitch, that is how we turned things around last sea­son.

“I can­not sprin­kle magic dust on this, it is about grind­ing out train­ing ses­sions, be or­gan­ised, be pro­fes­sional. T

“hat is what we are paid to do, it is our job.”

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