Jamal Lowe scores twice as Swansea return to form with win over Millwall
Jamal Lowe scored twice as promotion-chasing Swansea returned to form with an impressive 3-0 victory at Millwall.
It was a much-needed three points at The Den for the Swans, who had lost their previous four matches without scoring to leave their Championship automatic promotion hopes in tatters.
But their confidence returned once Andre Ayew had scored their first goal in 500 minutes of football just before the break, as Steve Cooper’s side consolidated their place in the play-offs, while all-but ending Millwall’s slim top-six ambitions.
Swansea started nervously, though, as Mason Bennett teed up Billy Mitchell, whose shot from the edge of the box was deflected just wide, with Freddie Woodman stranded.
Millwall’s bright opening continued, with Woodman on hand to save Bennett’s header after Jake Cooper had flicked on George Evans’ long throw.
The Swans were struggling to get it together in the final third, with passes not reaching their intended target.
But they did have a big chance to take the lead in the 27th minute when Jay Fulton’s pass got Lowe in behind, but Bartosz Bialkowski stood strong to make a good block.
Coming close seemed to spur the visitors on, but a promising counter-attack fizzled out when Lowe over-hit a through ball meant for Ayew.
However, Swansea’s goal drought finally came to an end on the stroke of half-time, as Conor Hourihane helped the ball on for Ayew, who bent a superb shot beyond Bialkowski into the far corner.
Their lead was almost cancelled out within a minute of the restart as Cooper’s header from Scott Malone’s cross came back off the inside of the post.
Fresh from surviving that scare, the Swans nearly doubled their lead when Ayew poked the ball through for Wayne Routledge, whose rising effort was beaten away by Bialkowski.
Bennett then slammed Danny McNamara’s cut-back wide for Millwall, as Lions manager Gary Rowett brought on Kenneth Zohore, Connor Mahoney and Mahlon Romeo in an attempt to salvage the game.
However, Swansea took a huge step towards sealing the points in the 76th minute when Lowe ran on to a smart pass by Routledge and progressed into the area before crashing in his first goal in 18 matches.
Zohore almost forced a grandstand finish when his terrific shot on the turn was superbly tipped over by Woodman.
But the Swans added a third with five minutes to go when Ayew’s cut-back found Lowe in space and he calmly lifted the ball into the top corner for his second.