Swans wary of unknown Petrolul

Swansea City manager Michael Laudrup has admitted that he has not heard of any Petrolul Ploiesti players ahead of their Europa League play-off clash.

Last Updated: 22/08/13 at 19:11 Post Comment

Michael Laudrup: Admits he has not heard of any Petrolul Ploiesti players

Michael Laudrup: Admits he has not heard of any Petrolul Ploiesti players

The Swans will host the Romanian side in the first leg, having already seen off Malmo FF with a 4-0 aggregate win in the previous round of qualifying.

Former West Bromwich Albion midfielder Filipe Teixeira is amongst Petrolul's ranks, but Laudrup says that his men have had plenty of homework to do in preparation for the tie.

"I had not heard of any of their players before the draw," he said.

"That's why on Wednesday we sat down with the team and showed them videos. When you play a game in the Premier League we all know each other. But with this team I don't think any of my players will have heard of them.

"Maybe they will know much more about us than the other way around. That's why it is important to know as much as you can.

"For example, if I'm the wide player on the right then who am I playing against? Is the full-back left-footed or right? Is he fast or is he slow?

"If I am a defender I would want to know if the opposition striker is short or tall. It's important the players watch the videos because my players need to see what kind of players they are up against.

"It's not like when we play Spurs on Sunday and you say to the players, you are playing against Aaron Lennon or Moussa Dembele. We all know who they are. But no-one knows Gheorge Grozav, Younis or the other guys.

"It's not being disrespectful, but the less you know an opponent, the more work you have to do."

Shock

Laudrup's side are strong favourites to progress, but he confessed to being wary coming up against unknown opposition following Celtic's shock defeat to Shakhtyor Karaganda in the UEFA Champions League qualifiers.

"I saw Celtic's result but didn't see the game," said Laudrup.

"But there are a lot of teams that maybe, if you look at the name, you haven't heard of them, but you have to be careful as then suddenly you could become the victim of a team that was not so well known.

"From Romania, look at FC Cluj. Who knew them five years ago? Now they have been in the group stage of the Champions League and were quite close to moving on to the knock-out stages.

"You have to be careful. Seven or eight years ago no-one knew of teams like Shakhtar Donetsk and then suddenly they are a huge team. That's the way it is with teams from Eastern Europe."

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