'Shouldn't happen' - Disappointed Russell Martin identifies what is still holding Swansea City back after Millwall draw

By Ian Mitchelmore

Russell Martin believes Swansea City's results will improve after they were held to a second consecutive home goalless draw.

The Swans were unable to break down a stubborn Millwall side while Ben Hamer made multiple saves to ensure Martin's men claimed a share of the spoils.

And the 35-year-old believes fitness is still an issue as Swansea continue to adjust to the methods of the new regime.

"I'm disappointed we didn't win," admitted the Swans head coach.

"I knew what to expect tonight. I was worried we wouldn't be able to maintain energy and intensity the longer the game went on because of how much they put in on Saturday.

"We are still fighting to get them physically where we want them to be. They're getting there.

"It was a little bit slow in the first half and the buildup. We created a big chance with Jamie Paterson. I think that's what we're waiting for really. We score, it changes the context of the game.

"Millwall were great in the way they set-up, they were really aggressive with the way they set up but I thought we dealt with it really well and we got control.

"There's so much really good stuff, but we don't score, and it gives the team something to really hold on to.

"The longer the game went on, the last 10 minutes, we were really tired. They actually got a bit stronger which shouldn't happen."

Nevertheless, Swansea kept a fourth clean sheet of the campaign in the stalemate with Millwall.

And Martin is confident that there will be an upturn in results in the future.

"It's coming. The last two games have been so much closer to where we want to be with the vision of the team and how it works," he admitted.

"And if we score tonight, it gives people a very different feeling about the team and where we're going.

"That's the beauty of a process. We have real clarity in why, and tonight it's because they can't maintain energy levels and intensity for the whole period."

READ MORE: The solid Swansea City player ratings as new man in the side superb but attacking trio fail to spark again vs Millwall

Jamie Paterson was withdrawn during the second half due to cramp while Rhys Williams missed out altogether after sustaining a knock in Saturday's draw with Hull City.

And Martin has confirmed Paterson is continuing to work his way to full fitness due to a lack of pre-season while Liverpool loanee Williams will be available to face Luton Town on Saturday.

"It was just cramp with Pato. He's playing at an intensity he hasn't played at for a while," added the boss.

"He's not had a full pre-season, that's why I think he's doing brilliantly. Plus Walshy [Liam Walsh] as well, it was a game for him to really try and impact.

"Rhys Williams is fine for Saturday. It was touch and go for tonight but when you've got Ben Cabango chomping at the bit and ready to play, we had to balance the risk and reward.

"If we risked him tonight and then lose him for a few games we would have been kicking ourselves.

"It was a decision made with the medical team who have been fantastic, and Rhys himself that he didn't feel quite ready."

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