Rhian Brewster grabs double as Swansea thrash relegation strugglers Middlesbrough to pile pressure on Jonathan Woodgate

RHIAN Brewster bagged a double to ignite Swansea’s play-off hopes and leave Middlesbrough in hot relegation water.

The 20-year-old Liverpool loanee took his tally to six goals since his January arrival to down decaf Boro and race clear as top scorer for Steve Cooper’s side.

Rhian Brewster helped himself to a double as Swansea thumped Middlesbrough 3-0
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But while the Teessiders are looking over their shoulders, the Swans are flying again and eyeing a top six finish.

Cooper said: “We’ve always been in the mix. We’ve never been too far away from the play-off positions.

“A 3-0 away from home is a fantastic result at any time of the season, never mind not playing for as many months as we have.”

And on Brewster, Cooper added: “He just needs to focus on making every day a good one.

“What’s good for him at the moment is he knows he will be playing on a weekend and he is thriving on that.

“You have to be professional, believe in yourself, and we are giving a lot of young players opportunities and they are making the most of it.”

George Friend set the tone for Boro when his slip allowed Aldo Kalulu to race clear only for the attacker’s dinked effort to hit the post.

Jonathan Woodgate could only watch on in disbelief as his Boro side produced a nightmare first half performance
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Brewster was denied by the woodwork after trying to divert a header goalwards as it seemed only a matter of time until a breakthrough.

And finally the deadlock was broken when he punished static marking to stab home Andre Ayew’s cross at the near post on 18 minutes.

Seconds later it was déjà brew when he doubled the advantage by volleying home Kalulu’s cross at the back.

Friend suffered another nightmare when tripping Conor Gallagher inside the box.

Brewster wanted it, but it was Ayew who picked up the ball to deliver another critical blow to Boro.

A Lewis Wing shot that finished in Row Z and a weak Rudy Gestede header were all the shell-shocked hosts could muster in a disastrous opening 45.

Woodgate made three changes at the break but it was too little too late as a 20-yarder from Wing that curled a foot wide was the best the hosts produced.

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Swansea were also denied a fourth at the death when George Byer’s 25-yard curler rebounded off the post.

Woodgate, whose team have a crunch clash at fellow strugglers Stoke next week, said: “We were very poor. It’s hard to explain that type of performance.

“Slightly better in the second half, but that was always going to be the case because it couldn’t have been any worse.

“To turn in a performance like that is not good enough but we have a week to put that right.”

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