December 30, 2017 / 5:55 PM / in a year

Winning debut for Carvalhal as Swansea beat Watford 2-1


Soccer Football - Premier League - Watford vs Swansea City - Vicarage Road, Watford, Britain - December 30, 2017 Swansea City's Jordan Ayew scores their first goal REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Swansea City’s new coach Carlos Carvalhal celebrated a memorable Premier League debut after his team scored two late goals in a thrilling 2-1 win at Watford on Saturday to move off the foot of the table.

Jordan Ayew and Luciano Narsingh struck in the closing stages to cancel out Andre Carrillo’s opener for the home side, who dominated the match but were punished after substitute Andre Gray missed a sitter.

“We deserved a win, luck is part of the game - they were lucky when we put the ball on the bar,” said Carvalhal, who took over from Paul Clement on Thursday after a two-year spell at Championship (second-tier) side Sheffield Wednesday.

“I must say to my players I am very, very happy with what they did on the pitch in a difficult situation.

“We didn’t play the first 45 minutes as we wish because we had some problems to control. The last 15 minutes we solved this problem. We started taking risk and put more players in attack.”

Ayew hit the crossbar with a 30-metre piledriver in the fifth minute but Watford regained composure quickly and missed two chances before Carrillo gave them an 11th-minute lead with his first Premier League goal.

The Peruvian headed the ball past Lukasz Fabianski after the Swansea keeper could only parry Richarlison’s shot from a tight angle.

Fabianski denied Gray with a superb save in the 85th minute and Swansea equalised moments later as Ayew side-footed the ball home from close range after an inviting cross from the right was headed into the Ghanaian’s path.

Shell-shocked Watford were dealt the knockout blow at the death as Dutchman Narsingh swept in a rebound to give Swansea only their second league win in 13 games, lifting them above West Bromwich Albion who have a game in hand.

Watford boss Marco Silva was disappointed and rued Gray’s miss as Watford squandered an opportunity for a second successive league victory following a six-game winless run.

“It’s really hard to take,” he said. “We are disappointed, our fans are as well.

“They had one shot off the bar but we controlled the match, scored one goal and had more chances to kill the match, even seconds before the goal.

“At this level, when you don’t score, it gives them belief.”

Writing by Zoran Milosavljevic, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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