Big Sam on: Swansea City

Sam Allardyce faced the media on Friday morning ahead of Sunday's Barclays Premier League clash with Swansea City.

The manager answered questions on his returning players, containing Wilfried Bony and his team's fine start to December.

What's the team news for this weekend?

SA: "Diafra Sakho and Alex Song have been training with us this week. They're in contention to make the squad but we'll have to wait and see because they've both been out for a while. We don't want to throw them in too early and risk further injury. Mark Noble could also make it but we don't have much time after the injury he picked up last weekend."

How hard is it going to be to contain Wilfried Bony?

SA: "It'll be very difficult to contain him because he's in such good form. We'll have to limit the supply into him from the midfield and wide men. We need to get tight to him but not too tight because he can roll defenders well, he's strong and very skilful. To try and knock him off the ball is not an easy task. It'll be a good test for our lads to play against a player who's in such good form."

You scouted Bony when he was at Vitesse, and reportedly put in a bid for him. What happened there, why didn't the transfer go through?

SA: "We signed Andy Carroll and it was a case of one or the other. We couldn't do both with the budget we had, we also needed to bring in other players in different positions."

Bony has been the top scorer this calendar year and has scored six in twelve games this season. Diafra Sakho has scored six in seven starts, you wouldn't want to switch them, would you?

SA: "No I wouldn't. We're looking forward to having Diaf back, I'm not sure he's ready to start a match yet. We've also got Enner back, he played 25 minutes against West Brom and then we've also got Carlton Cole and Mauro Zarate so this is the best striking options we've ever had."

What did you make of the win over West Brom in midweek?

SA: "We got another valuable three points. It wasn't the best performance but we ground out a result. It's been a busy week and we've got six points so far so we're all happy with that. However I think Sunday's game is the biggest test of them all. Three games in eight days is a big test but we're approaching it with confidence. If we win what a great week it would've been for us."

James Tomkins was outstanding against West Brom, scoring the winner. After the incident at Everton, how impressed have you been with his sense of character to bounce back?

SA: "I think with everyone there are times in your life when you have things you have to deal with. So it was a test of character for him but he's come through it. I know he regrets what happened at Everton but he's got on with his job and he needs to make sure it's not going to happen again."

Your next three games are Swansea, Sunderland and Leicester, three games that you and your staff must be hoping to get some points from?

SA: "Yes, we've bounced back from the defeat against Everton with two wins and now we want to maintain that level of performance and get some consistency. We want to build some momentum ahead of our massive Christmas fixtures with Chelsea and Arsenal. We know both those games will be very difficult so to get as many points as we can beforehand will be very useful."

More to follow...