Swansea play down 'brawl' reports
By Football News
Swansea played down reports on Monday that a training session before their 1-0 loss to Chelsea ended in a mass brawl.
Reports in the British press had claimed a high-intensity intra-club practice match last week was marred by several dangerous tackles, which led to a six man punch-up.
But Swansea dismissed the fight as something that happens at clubs 'up and down the country' and declared the Premier League outfit had already 'moved on'.
"These things often happen on training grounds up and down the country, so despite the media reports, Swans fans shouldn't be concerned," a Swansea spokesman told the South Wales Evening Post.
"The squad had just returned to training on the back of a disappointing defeat at Hull and their frustration at not getting the result they wanted boiled over during a full 11 v 11 practice match between the group.
"Yes, there were a couple of incidents between certain players, which the club does not condone yet understands. They were quickly dealt with and everyone moved on."
Rumours of infighting and squad unrest have swirled around Swansea for most of the season with defender Chico Flores having allegedly threatened Garry Monk during Michael Laudrup's tenure as manager.
Monk, now interim manager, had organised the practice match last week in an attempt to help his team get over their 1-0 loss at Hull on April 5, which saw the Welsh club drop closer to the relegation zone.
Swansea's battling loss to Chelsea at the Liberty Stadium on Sunday, after Flores was sent off in the 16th minute, saw Monk's side finish the weekend just three points clear of 18th-placed Fulham, who occupy the third relegation spot.
"We are in a difficult position in the league and everyone wants to secure top-flight status for the club as soon as possible," Swansea's spokesman said.
"There are a lot of winners within the squad and they want to finish the job. You only have to look at the commitment and effort they put in against Chelsea on Sunday with just 10 men to see that.
"It certainly looked like a team that was fighting for each other rather than against each other - as is being suggested in some quarters."