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Holland coach watches Swansea City's Jonathan de Guzman shine

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: January 21, 2013

Jonathan de Guzman

Jonathan de Guzman

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JONATHAN de Guzman may have played his way into the Holland frame after scoring twice in Swansea City's 3-1 win against Stoke.

Dutch national team assistant manager Danny Blind was at the Liberty to watch the match on Saturday.

He will have seen de Guzman produce arguably his best performance in a Swansea shirt and take his goal tally to six since agreeing a season-long loan switch from Villarreal last summer.

Though born in Canada, de Guzman came through Feyenoord's youth system, has represented Holland at under-21 level and recently admitted he'd like to play for the country's senior side.

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The 25-year-old executed a textbook free-kick just before the hour to double Swansea's lead after Ben Davies had opened the scoring.

And he made it 3-0 ten minutes from time, pouncing on an exquisite Danny Graham pass to make the game safe for Swansea before Michael Owen grabbed a late Stoke consolation.

Aware

"I was aware he was here — that's why I scored the two goals," joked de Guzman.

"They are keeping an eye on a couple of the Dutch players here and I think I had a decent game.

"I am very happy with how it went so we'll see what happens."

Michel Vorm, already a regular member of Louis van Gaal's squad, enjoyed a quiet afternoon, while fellow Dutchmen Dwight Tiendalli and Kemy Agustien did not feature.

Tiendalli was an unused substitute and Agustien missed out through injury.

But both have played their part in recent weeks when Michael Laudrup has rotated his squad to cope with a demanding schedule of fixtures.

"The momentum in the group is excellent.

"Everyone has been getting a chance, everyone has been working hard and the group has been moving forward," said de Guzman.

"In practice we are really pushing each other and I have to say as a group there is a really good feeling about things.

"We are looking at each game and that is important."

Sought-after striker Danny Graham dropped to the bench for Stoke's visit because of sickness.

His future remains unclear with Norwich manager Chris Hughton confirming the former Watford man is one of two players he has bid for this transfer window.

Sunderland are also thought to be keen on the frontman.

"Most (people) are aware we have put in a couple of offers for players," said Hughton.

"We have made bids for two players. The other clubs will have the say on whether that goes any further than that."

Next up for Swansea is a Capital One Cup semi-final second leg meeting with Chelsea at the Liberty on Wednesday.

Chico Flores missed Saturday's game with a knee injury picked up at Arsenal last week, but is expected to return for the Blues' visit.

Swansea lead 2-0 from the first leg, a result that has sparked talk of a trip to Wembley for the club's first ever major cup final appearance.

"Right now I am trying to enjoy the Stoke win, but Wednesday will be tough," added de Guzman.

"We are 2-0 up with home advantage but we are playing Chelsea — they are a world-class team who won the Champions League so it's not going to be easy.

"It will be difficult, but we are in a great state of mind and know we can win.

"There is pressure every game, every training session.

"This group is desperate to do well and you can feel that.

"Everyone is working very hard.

"It is a great achievement so far but the season has a long way to go.

"We certainly respect them but there isn't fear.

"We are home and we are 2-0 up, which is probably where we play our best football.

"We have to keep the momentum. I think we have a very good chance."

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3 comments

  • cyril392  |  January 21 2013, 3:28PM

    JDG, like a number of top players, can use both feet with equal ability. The last 3 touches for his second goal on Saturday were, right-left-right (finish). Players with that sort of ability are a) comparatively rare; b) so difficult to "pick", as they can turn/go past players, on either side. Many years ago I went to watch Aston Villa who had tumbled into the third division (League 1) play Oxford United at the old Manor Ground. The mighty Villa were expected to beat little Oxford, who had been a non-league club not much more than a decade earlier. However, Oxford had a midfield player called John Evanson. Like JDG, Evanson was "two-footed" in every sense of the phrase. Villa could not get hold of him at all. He ran the show that afternoon, and Oxford won 2-0.

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  • CroJack  |  January 21 2013, 2:19PM

    @SA1 Computing Agree. He is 25, attacking and goalscoring midfielder, nice person, and he wants to stay with us. You have to see goals he scored earlier in his career to see how dangerous he is in front of the goal. Many people don't know that Jono was one of the reasons Micheal Laudrup left Mallorca. Michael wanted to build the squad around Jono, but he was sold to Villareal. Laudrup got really mad.

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  • SA1 Computing  |  January 21 2013, 12:52PM

    Jonathan has proved to be a very important player for us, he is the blueprint of a Swansea City player. Laudrup needs to secure him on a permanent basis to continue the progress we have made of producing talented, attacking midfielders who got an eye for goal.

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