Match Preview: Swindon vs Cheltenhan Town

Cheltenham Races 4

Saturday afternoon sees Swindon Town entertain Cheltenham Town at the County Ground in the top of the table clash…

Form Guide… 

First placed Swindon are currently on a run of two defeats in twenty-three League Two matches. Town’s current form guide reads five wins and one defeat in six outings.

At the County Ground, Town are unbeaten since August, making it 15 games without tasting defeat and 41 points from a possible 45. Swindon have won their last nine games as hosts with only one goal conceded in eleven games.

2nd placed Cheltenham Town lag six points behind, with Swindon also having a game in-hand – against Barnet at Underhill.

‘Nam lost their midweek match 3-1 at Morecambe and have a mixed record of late with two wins, two draws and two defeats in their previous six League Two outings.

Away from Whaddon Road – or whatever it’s called nowadays – Cheltenham have three victories, one draw and two defeats in six, scoring 14 and conceding 10, including that 5-0 thumping of the Daggers a few weeks back.

On a points per game basis, ‘Nam have the second best away record in the division picking up 1.8 points per game, just behind Southend with 1.9.

Swindon-Town-FC.co.uk Head-to-Head…

Town have faced Cheltenham 8 times, with a record of 1 win, 2 draws and 5 defeats, scoring 7 and conceding 14.

At the County Ground, Swindon have 1 win, 1 draw and 2 defeats, scoring 6 and conceding 8.

Town’s only victory came in February 2008 when Cox, Paynter and Roberts all scored to give us a comfortable 3-0 victory over the Robins.

In the meeting between the two sides back in August, Town fell to a narrow 0-1 defeat following an early second half header from Steve Elliot.

History book…

When Swindon were promoted to the Premiership in 1993, Cheltenham Town finished second in the Southern League – and with five divisions separating the sides, they met for a pre-season friendly.

Just nine years later, after a meteoric rise by Cheltenham and a meteoric demise by Swindon, the two teams met in their first league encounters, in the third tier of English football – in a match marred by arguments between Town fans and players, the Cheltenham Robins beat their Swindon counterparts by two goals to nil, and compounded their misery later in the season, winning 3-0 at the County Ground.

One of Swindon’s best ever signings came from Cheltenham in the late 1950′s – Bert Head signing Mike Summerbee from Whaddon Road on amateur forms in 1958, after Summerbee had a spell playing under his father and Cheltenham boss, George. Summerbee became an integral part of the team that became known as “Bert’s Babes” – winning their first promotion in 1963 – “Buzzer” later moving on to Manchester City and going on to play for England.

What The Stats Say… 

The match sees Swindon, who remain the most efficient side in the division, face 7th ranked Cheltenham, according to our latest rankings.

Here are how the teams perform in each of the five attacking and defensive measures, when assessed against the rest of the division…

Defence

Attack

 

STFC(Hosts)

r

  ‘Nam     (Away)

r

 

STFC(Hosts)

r

‘Nam (Away)

r

Shots Against Per Game

5.6

1

10.8

12

Shots For Per Game

12.1

7

11.5

3

% Shots Against on Target

38.5%

2

56.2%

24

% Shots For on Target

48.3%

18

51.5%

10

% Save Rate

78.4%

7

77%

9

% Strike Rate

19%

2

16.3%

4

Corners Against Per Game

2.8

1

5.3

6

Corners Won Per Game

6.3

11

4.5

16

Possession Conceded

46.2%

2

50.8%

12

Possession Won

53.8%

2

49.2%

12

R = rank: The ranking shown for each measure indicates the efficiency of the sides against the rest of the division as either hosts or the away side | TheWashbag.com

For a side with the second best away record in the division, this certainly doesn’t manifest itself in the rankings. Cheltenham allow a fair few shots at them and the highest number of shots against on target in the division.

With ‘Nam not afraid to give away a bit of possession, they’ve made up for their defensive frailties with a clinical conversion rate, scoring a goal for every 16.3% shots.

Swindon are exceptional as hosts. Our only real complaint can be the poor percentage of shots which test the opposition keeper.

SCORED

1-15

16-30

31-45

45+

46-60

61-75

76-90

90+

STFC (at home)

3

 5

5

2

7

8

8

1

‘Nam (away)

6

 2

7

1

4

8

3

1

Cheltenham are quicker out of the blocks, but Town are stronger as the game progresses as shown by Tuesday night’s victory over Dagenham.

CONCEDED

1-15

16-30

31-45

45+

46-60

61-75

76-90

90+

STFC (at home)

1

1

2

0

0

2

2

0

‘Nam (away)

4

2

6

0

4

5

3

0

With Town yet to concede more than two goals as hosts in any one period, Cheltenham are vulnerable to conceding just before half time.

Kickoff.co.uk Prediction…

Result: Swindon Win 58% | Cheltenham Win 13% | Draw 29%

Full time result: Swindon 1-0 22% | Swindon 0-0 17%| Swindon 2-0 17% | Swindon 0-1 9% | Swindon 2-1 8%

My prediction… 

Surely Wes Foderingham will be beaten for the second time in nine League Two matches, as Cheltenham have failed to score in only 15% of their previous 20 away games and are the second best travellers in the division.

With that in mind…and Swindon scoring 2 goals or more in all but 3 of our 17 matches as host… I’d have to say a 2-1 victory for Swindon.

Come on You Reds!

4 thoughts on “Match Preview: Swindon vs Cheltenhan Town

  1. Could Cheltenham’s low posession stats but good shot conversion rate be due to having direct counter-attacking wingers? Unlike ours, they go more directly for goal (McGlashan and Mohammed) and so wouldn’t need huge amounts of the ball to score?

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