Swansea midfielder Leon Britton calls for calm heads if they are to take the spoils in the south Wales derby this weekend
Britton admits their best chance to win is with eleven players on the field after he was sent-off in the same fixture in 2008
Tuesday 29 October 2013
Leon Britton has warned cool heads will be needed if Swansea are to prevail in Sunday's south Wales derby meeting with Cardiff.
The first Barclays Premier League meeting between the two Welsh clubs has been eagerly anticipated by both sets of fans since the dates of the two games were announced, and will reach a fever pitch this week.
The two sides last met during the 2010-11 Championship season, with each team picking up a win on the road to continue the record of no side having done the league double in the fixture.
Britton is one of a handful of Swansea regulars to have previous experience of the white-hot atmosphere of the derby and was in fact sent off during a 2-2 draw back in November 2008.
So he is more aware than most that keeping control of emotions will be key come Sunday afternoon.
"There have been a few sending offs in recent games, but in the five or six derby games I've played in they have been pretty good and not too much trouble or 22 man brawls," said the 30-year-old midfielder.
"There's been the odd sending off, but they have usually been for two yellow cards rather than straight reds.
"But the main thing is you want 11 players on the pitch to give you the best chance to win.
"It's very different. It's like a cup final. It's not like a league game. Sometimes it's crazy. It can be hard to control the game as it is so fast and furious at times.
"But they are great occasions to be involved in with great atmospheres."
Britton does not believe Swansea's Spanish contingent will need too much guidance to realise just how significant the game will be.
"We can relay what the game means to the football club, the fans and the city," he said.
"They know. They have been here a while now.
"They know the history of the football club. To be fair, the Spanish lads have played in derby matches over there.
"They are used to it and in the build-up we will let the new players know how much it means."
While much is made of the fierce rivalry that exists between the two clubs, Britton believes the fact they now face each other in the top flight in front of a huge global audience is something that should be celebrated, and hopes they will become a regular fixture in the Premier League.
"It's great for Welsh football that the derby is in the Premier League," he said.
"The first one is on Sunday, but we want that to carry on for the next five to 10 years and have both clubs in the Premier League because it is fantastic for the young kids and fans to watch and support their local team rather than the big clubs like Manchester United and Liverpool."
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