Football - Taylor: Monk is the man

Swansea defender Neil Taylor has given unequivocal backing to rookie head coach Garry Monk as the Welsh club prepare for a key Barclays Premier League encounter against Norwich.

PA Sport Report

Monk has overseen a solitary win from 10 games in all competitions since he was put in charge at the Liberty Stadium following Michael Laudrup's managerial exit just over seven weeks ago.

Swansea go into the Canaries clash on Saturday just five points clear of relegation trouble, and there has yet to be an announcement on whether or not former Swans captain Monk will keep the role beyond this season.

But Wales international Taylor has no doubt about Monk's quality as Swansea look to build on an impressive midweek draw at Arsenal.

"We definitely think he is the right man to take us forward. We are all giving our all for him," Taylor said.

"You can talk about experience, but he has got experience from three or four of the best managers around at the moment - (Roberto) Martinez, (Brendan) Rodgers and (Pablo) Souza. He has learnt from all of them.

"He was captain under a lot of them, and he has been at the club for 10 years. He knows this football club better than anyone."

Victory over Liberty Stadium visitors Norwich would give Swansea much-needed breathing space, and Taylor accepts that points are all that matter at this stage of the season.

"It wasn't pretty (against Arsenal), it wasn't really the Swansea way the other night, but we scrapped and gave it our all. We got a good point, and maybe could have got three," he added.

"It will take our quality that we have on the ball and that bit of scrapping. If we can do both, we will be more than a match for all these teams around us.

"The noises have never come out of our camp that we are too good to go down.

"We know we are still a relatively small club in this league, and we have to prove ourselves all over again in the scrap. The last couple of years we haven't been in that scrap, we have been comfortable in mid-table.

"Europe this year has tested us, and it has taken us to the limit. It has done to us what it maybe did to teams like Newcastle last year that were involved in the Europa League. You have to come through it and show your character."

Swansea do not have a good record against Norwich, and Taylor knows the stakes will be high as they face a team just two points and one place above them in the table.

"It is a must-win game," he said. "You have got to go out and do it now. It is going to go right to the wire at both ends of the table this year.

"Norwich are fighting, and they need a win just like we do. They have got good Premier League players and a good manager. We know we are going to have to be at our best.

"We haven't been as good as we need to be at home this season. If our record had been a bit better, we probably wouldn't be in the position that we are.

"When things are going great, like they were last season, things flow and everyone is happy, but this is the sticky end of football and you have got to show a bit of character.

"We've got to be right on top of each other as players and push each other right to the end of the season. It is time for everyone to be ready and to perform."

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