AVB: Spirit showed second-half

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Andre Villas-Boas was eager to take the positives from a night which saw Chelsea share the spoils for a second consecutive Premier League match following their 1-1 draw with Swansea at the Liberty Stadium.

The Blues' boss praised his players for their spirited second-half performance after going down 1-0 at the break, which resulted in a stoppage time equaliser from Jose Bosingwa to earn the visitors a point.

Scott Sinclair had opened the scoring against his former club in the first period, and raised his hands in apology to the visiting Chelsea supporters in Wales.

"It was a tale of two different halves," Villas-Boas told the club's official website. "In the second half we were very competent and pressed hard.

"The first half was the opposite, we conceded the initiative, although the goal came in a period when we were beginning to get things right, but we made a mistake from the set play.

"It's important to praise Swansea, though, we conceded space in the first half and they are excellent at finding the gaps and playing through teams."

After victories for both Tottenham and Liverpool, the fight for those all-important Champions League places continues to ebb and flow, and Villas-Boas is targeting a positive result from this weekend's Stamford Bridge clash against Manchester United.

"It's a gap that grows but a couple of weeks ago it was reduced," the Portuguese tactician added. "A seven-point gap is nothing in this league.

"At the moment it makes no sense to talk about winning the league, we're competing for the Champions League, we will face United at the weekend and see after that game what we can do."

One player who won't be available for Sunday's encounter is Ashley Cole, after the full-back saw red late in the game, and received his marching orders after being shown a second yellow card.

"The first yellow card was fair, the second was difficult to assess because of the speed that it happened," Villas-Boas concluded. "Ashley thought he'd get the ball and he made a bet.

"I'm not sure if there was enough contact because Dyer got up very quickly. Ashley's talent is immense, but in the end Dyer protects the ball well and he's a very skilful and technical player."

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