Bafetimbi Gomis 'needs to do talking on pitch' - John Hartson

Bafetimbi Gomis joined Swansea from Lyon in summer 2014
Bafetimbi Gomis joined Swansea from Lyon in summer 2014

Bafetimbi Gomis must start to show his worth to Swansea City on the pitch, says former Wales striker John Hartson.

The frontman, 29, criticised Swansea on French television recently, claiming the Premier League club had not fulfilled promises on playing time.

But Gomis is now first-choice striker after the sale of Wilfried Bony.

"Gomis seems to be doing a lot of talking off the pitch, but certainly now he needs to start doing his talking on it," Hartson said.

"He has an opportunity now to show the fans. He gets the shirt, he'll play every week, no more Bony, and he's got a chance now.

"He's on big wages... he came from Lyon with a big reputation."

Following the departure of Ivory Coast striker Bony to Manchester City, for a fee that could rise to £28m, Gomis now has his wish to lead Swansea's attack.

But the Premier League side has struggled for form since the turn of the year, apart from a 6-2 thumping of lower league Tranmere in the FA Cup third round.

Swansea have lost 4-1 to Liverpool, 5-0 to Chelsea, drawn against Queen's Park Rangers and West Ham United, and were dumped out of the FA Cup at the weekend by Blackburn Rovers of the Championship.

John Hartson on Swansea's Bafetimbi Gomis
"I was really hoping the Swansea fans wouldn't boo him at the weekend and they didn't... if they boo him I think it'll kill him."

But despite that, Hartson believes that Gomis is capable of filling the hole left by Bony.

"I like him. He's different to Bony, he likes to run the channels, he's good in the air," added Hartson, 39, who won 51 caps for Wales and scored 14 goals.

"But on Saturday [against Blackburn] I saw a performance from him that I thought was a little bit sloppy in possession, gave the ball away a lot, he never got into certain areas where he could attack the ball.

"I didn't think the service was brilliant to him, but by saying things like he has done he brings pressure on himself.

"I was really hoping the Swansea fans wouldn't boo him at the weekend and they didn't, they were actually quite good with him.

"If they boo him I think it'll kill him; I think he's a player at the minute that is desperate for confidence.

"So he needs to get his head down and start thinking about playing football for Swansea City."

Swansea return to league action on Sunday with a tricky trip to play third-placed Southampton.

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