Michael Laudrup talks up Wayne Routledge form after Europa League victory for Swansea - European - Football - The Independent

Michael Laudrup talks up Wayne Routledge form after Europa League victory for Swansea

The Welsh outfit won their play-off against Petrolul Ploiesti 5-1

Michael Laudrup believes Wayne Routledge is again putting himself in the frame for an England call-up after the winger scored twice in the 5-1 Europa League thumping of Petrolul Ploiesti.

The outcome of the play-off tie first leg was never in doubt once Swansea scored three goals in 11 first-half minutes at the Liberty Stadium, thanks to Routledge's brace and a Michu strike.

An own goal from Petrolul keeper Pecanha, who inadvertently diverted a Wilfried Bony shot into his own net after it had squirmed under him, and an effort from substitute Alejandro Pozuelo made it 5-0.

Gheorghe Grozav got a stunning consolation for the Romanian cup holders with an overhead kick, but it appears unlikely to spark a remarkable turnaround in next week's second leg.

Routledge was outstanding, a thorn in the side of the Petrolul defence throughout, again showcasing the sort of form which saw him mentioned as a possible England squad member prior to the summer friendlies against the Republic of Ireland and Brazil.

"If you play well you always have a chance of being picked for the national side," said Laudrup.

"I have been asked before about Wayne and any manager would want as many of their players in the national team as possible as it is an honour for clubs like us. But I will leave it up to Roy Hodgson."

Laudrup has said from the start of the European campaign that the minimum he wanted to achieve was a place in the group stage, and knows they are one professional performance away from that target after brushing past Petrolul in a similar fashion to their thrashing of Malmo in the last round.

He said: "To score five goals and win 5-1 is excellent. In the first half-hour we did very well, we kept the ball and moved them around.

"We scored three of our goals, we could have scored more, and we gave them nothing.

"I told the players at half-time we had the chance to go for a fourth goal and we did that.

"They were more offensive in the second half but we still dominated, got the fourth and a great fifth from Pozuelo.

"We still have to finish the job, after the first leg against Malmo I said we still had a job to do and that is the same here.

"We are close to another historical achievement for this club and we have to finish it.

"We have done well here, we created chances and dominated the game. We don't have to do that next week, we just need to get a result."

Laudrup's opposite number Cosmin Contra, who played under the Dane at Getafe, cut a stern figure following his side's heavy defeat.

"I have no explanation for the result," he said.

"There is a difference between English and Romanian football, but the gap is not that big.

"We have maybe less than a five per cent chance of qualifying so I hope in next week's second leg we can show the potential we have."

PA

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