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Swansea City's 'non-negotiable' penalty taker system as Steve Cooper lays down Borja Baston challenge; Borja scored from the spot at QPR, and Cooper has spoken about the process to select the penalty taker.

Byline: Ian Mitchelmore

Steve Cooper has confirmed Borja Baston is Swansea City's designated penalty taker.

The Swans were awarded their first spot-kick of the season in the3-1 win over Queens Park Rangerson Wednesday night, with Borja slotting from 12 yards out to put his side 2-1 up.

Swansea were awarded a total of eight penalties last term, although they missed four of those.

Oli McBurnie was denied against both Preston and Bolton while Wilfried Bony and Bersant Celina were unable to convert from the spot against Aston Villa and West Brom respectively.

Matt Grimes took over the duties late on in the 2018/19 season, scoring with both of his efforts against Man City and Middlesbrough.

But speaking ahead of the clash with Birmingham City, Cooper revealed Borja - who is the joint-top scorer in the Championship with four goals in four matches - has been assigned to penalties since the start of the campaign.

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"We made (the decision) it together. It's been clear in every game who the designated penalty takers are. There'll be no grey areas in terms of that, that's for sure," said Swansea's head coach.

"I'm pretty sure it was Grimesy who got the ball and handed it to Borja.

"We've got the designated penalty takers, one, two and three, it goes up before the game and that's what it is. It's non-negotiable."

And Cooper has revealed the Swans' struggles from the spot last term were not part of his decision to give Borja the responsibility of taking penalties this season.

"If I'm being honest it wasn't because of that. I remember the one Bersant missed (at West Brom) which the players have reminded him of a few times," he added.

"But that's what we do. Our coaching team analyse who we think the best penalty takers are, we give them the order and then they use it."

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Borja is expected to lead the line when the Swans host Birmingham at the Liberty Stadium on Sunday, with Cooper's men going in search of their fourth league win in five matches.

And Cooper admits he's pleased with the 26-year-old striker's efforts so far this term, although he is expecting more from the Spaniard as the season continues.

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"His numbers for goals are good at the moment, but like with everything else, we've only played four games," added Cooper.

"We've always got to be striving to get better and that's how we'll go about it."

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Swansea City players celebrate Borja Baston's penalty against QPR

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Wales Online (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Aug 24, 2019
Words:474
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