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Laudrup: Keep the focus


15:12 6th December 2012

. . . Swans boss insists players won't get carried away with good form

Michael Laudrup has told his players to maintain their focus as they look to reach new heights this weekend.

The Swans host Norwich at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday knowing that a win could take them up to third place in the Premier League table.

Laudrup’s men currently lie seventh following a run of just one defeat in their last nine games, courtesy of last weekend’s success against Arsenal.

But the Swans boss is cautious ahead of the clash against the Canaries, stating the squad cannot get too carried away despite the praise they have earned.

“It will be a really difficult game,” said Laudrup. “We are coming up against a team in really good form; they (Norwich) haven’t lost in their last nine games.

“During this run they beat both Arsenal and Manchester United, as well as beating Tottenham in the League Cup.

“It is therefore important that we maintain our focus, because if you lose that then you will lose games.

“We have to remember that in football, things can change quickly and you can have a bad run.

“But Norwich have conceded only four goals in their last eight games and they will arrive here in an equal position to ourselves.”

Norwich made a slow start to the season, failing to win in their first seven games.

But since then manager Chris Hughton, who took over from Paul Lambert in the summer, has steadied the ship and guided the Canaries up to 12th place in the Premier League.

They haven’t lost in the league since losing 4-1 to Chelsea in early October, and have gained impressive results against the likes of Arsenal, Manchester United, Everton and Spurs.

Saturday’s meeting will be between two teams in red-hot form, with some pundits quietly suggesting that the Swans could mount a challenge for a place in Europe this season.

However, Laudrup played down his hopes for the campaign, insisting that Saturday’s game is the most important.

“We are very happy with where we are at right now,” he said. “But we are only 15 games into the season. There are still 23 games to play.

“We have to take one game at a time and keep our feet on the ground.

“If we are still doing well around March and April, then maybe we can start to dream – but not in December.”

With the busy festive period just around the corner, every club in the Premier League will need a full squad to choose from.

The Swans play four games in the space of nine days over Christmas, and with the January transfer window looming, the boss is hopeful he can strengthen his squad even further.

“We have some very important games this month,” said Laudrup. “When you are in a good moment, like we are now, people play well and confidence is high.

“We have a good squad of players and you could see that against Arsenal, when Dwight (Tiendalli) and Luke (Moore) both came on and had an impact on the game.

“That shows that we have good depth in the squad, but it doesn’t mean we can just stand still. We always want to improve and we are looking at doing that.”

Meanwhile, Laudrup confirmed that Michel Vorm would not be ready to return to the squad this week, despite the goalkeeper being involved in full training this week.

The Swans boss also stated that Pablo Hernandez was doubtful for Saturday’s clash after he missed last weekend’s win at Arsenal with a thigh injury, while there is better news surrounding Wayne Routledge as the winger looks set to return after missing the win at The Emirates.

See Michael's full press conference now on Swans Player HERE

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