Stoke City 2 Swansea City 2: Battling Swans rescue a point
Goals from Gylfi Sigurdsson and Alberto Paloschi in the second half rescued a point for Swansea City as they drew 2-2 with Stoke City in the Premier League on Saturday.
Ibrahim Afellay scored the first goal of the game with a header early on at the Britannia Stadium after he was picked out by Marko Arnautovic. The home side continued to dominate proceedings but they were forced to wait until after the break for their next goal.
After a strong first half, Bojan Krkic capitalised on some poor Swansea defending and he showed his class by placing the ball in the far corner, past Lukasz Fabianski.
Swansea eventually showed some fight after going 2-0 behind and they dominated the rest of the game, sparking hopes of a revival in the 68th minute when Sigurdsson hit the back of the net.
The comeback was complete in the 79th minute when substitute Paloschi let fly from the edge of the area and saw his shot deflected home.
The draw leaves Stoke in eighth while Swansea moved 10 points clear of the relegation zone in 15th spot.
Swansea had two early chances but neither Leon Britton nor Bafetimbi Gomis could find the back of the net from the edge of the area.
The Potters opened the scoring in the 13th minute with Afellay grabbing a goal on his 30th birthday. Arnautovic was allowed to turn inside the area and the forward curled in an inch-perfect cross for Afellay, who was left unmarked inside the six-yard box.
Spaniard Joselu had two chances to score before the break but he was denied by Fabianski and the offside flag.
With seconds to go in the first half, Jack Cork forced the first save out of Jakob Haugaard but the Premier League debutant was on hand to dive on the low drive.
Mark Hughes' side doubled their advantage just after the break following a superb run from Bojan. The former Barcelona man was given too much time and space and he fired the ball into the far corner past Fabianski.
Swansea boss Francesco Guidolin decided to make a change and he introduced Jefferson Montero for the first time since he took charge. The winger made an immediate impact with his mazy runs and crosses causing plenty of problems for Stoke's defence.
The Ecuadorian's introduction changed the momentum of the game and Sigurdsson fired his side back into it after a neat turn on the edge of the box. His right-footed drive went through the legs of a Stoke defender and in doing so wrong-footed Haugaard in the goal.
Swansea drew level after a run from defender Ashley Williams, the Wales international cutting the ball back for Paloschi, whose effort was deflected in off Philipp Wollscheid.
Stoke had one final chance through Arnuatovic but his free-kick hit the side netting to round off a disappointing afternoon on home soil.
Key Opta stats:
-Stoke City are unbeaten in five Barclays Premier League home games against Swansea City (W3 D2).
-Gylfi Sigurdsson (10) is the first Icelandic player to score 10+ goals in a Premier League season since Eidur Gudjohnsen in 2004/05 (12).
-Ibrahim Afellay scored his first Premier League goal at the Britannia Stadium. It was also Stoke's 200th Premier League goal at the Britannia Stadium.
-Bojan Krkic's last three Premier League goals for the Potters have arrived at the Britannia Stadium.
-Marko Arnautovic, who assisted Afellay's opener, has been involved in more PL goals this season than any other Stoke player (15 – 10 goals, five assists).
Swansea have kept just one clean sheet in their last 17 Premier League away games.