Paul Clement excited to renew love affair with FA Cup on Swansea bow

By dsguser
06 January 2017

New Swansea boss Paul Clement renews his love affair with the FA Cup welcoming the opportunity to learn more about his squad.

Clement was Chelsea's assistant manager when the Blues lifted the cup at Wembley in 2009 and 2010 by beating Everton and Portsmouth.

And Saturday's third round trip to Hull marks Clement's first game in charge of Swansea after he chose to swap life as Carlo Ancelotti's assistant at Bayern Munich for a Premier League survival battle.

"I have two winners' medals, one with Guus Hiddink and the other with Carlo," head coach Clement said.

"We did the double in 2010 (under Ancelotti) and I love the FA Cup as a competition.

"I've been to the final and stood there with the trophy on the podium.

"Hearing 'Abide With Me' and the national anthem ringing out around you makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up."

Clement's priority after succeeding Bob Bradley is to safeguard Swansea's top-flight status.

The former Derby boss saw Swansea move within a point of safety with a 2-1 win at Crystal Palace on Tuesday night.

But he is happy to start with an FA Cup tie against the only side below them in the Premier League.

"It is not a distraction (from the relegation battle), it is a chance for me to prepare the team," Clement said.

"This is another chance for me to observe the players, the level they are at and what we need to do in terms of personnel to improve the team.

"We want to win the game, we approach every game like that. But more than that I want to see a performance, a 90-minute performance.

"Against Palace we had a 45-minute performance and we need to stretch that over a longer period."

Clement is confident that he can turn around Swansea's fortunes after a troubled season which has already seen Francesco Guidolin and Bradley in charge.

And he believes that can be achieved by returning to the traditions of Swansea's passing philosophy.

"It's going to be a success if we start to get the team playing good football - the kind of football people were used to when Roberto Martinez, Paulo Sousa and Brendan Rodgers were here," Clement said.

"I think my ideas of football are not dissimilar to them about the style, and the fans have enjoyed that kind of football.

"Maybe it's not been present over the last couple of years.

"But I want to win games and I believe there's a certain way that should be done.

"Hopefully I'm a good fit for this club, and the club is a good fit for me to be able to express my own imprint on this team."

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