Swindon 4 Yeovil Town 1: Williams strikes against former club
Yeovil were meant to be Swindon’s ‘bogey team’ after three defeats in the previous four home games against the Glovers. But as Matt Davies reports, Yeovil offered little in a convincing 4-1 victory for Swindon.
It has been an active week at SN1, a weekend win away at Walsall, a departure and two new arrivals but we are used to this now aren’t we?
Swindon made one change to the team, club captain Alan McCormack making his return to the first team after injury, playing at right back – talk about being versatile. Kick off was upon us and the teams emerged from the tunnel Swindon wearing red and Yeovil seemingly out to prove that fluorescent can be fashionable.
Yeovil defender Dan Burn, who has an uncanny resemblance to Aden Flint, looked enormous in comparison to his own teammates and the Swindon players. This prompted me to calculate a pointless statistic, Swindon’s out-field players had an average height of 182cm and the visitors had an average height 183cm, so Swindon were still the smaller side, just.
The game was underway and Swindon made a good start, they were keeping the ball well and getting a feel for the game. Town were looking to take an early lead and their persistent pressure was building on the away side. Winger Gary Roberts was involved from the off when he burst down the left hand side before passing to fellow midfielder Simon Ferry, but his lay off was intercepted by a backtracking defender.
The game was gathering speed and the momentum was with Swindon, the home side had a flurry of half chances to take the lead with Andy Williams and Matt Ritchie both shooting over and Roberts having a shot blocked for a corner. The next few minutes were quieter as both teams battled to get on top. The away side won their first of many free kicks but the ball was gathered well before a fast break involving Roberts resulted in nothing.
The visitors were then dealt a yellow card when defender Burn gets into the referee’s book after an illegal challenge of James Collins. The Robins continued to probe, Ferry came close with a scissor kick after latching onto a loose ball from the penalty area.
The break through finally came in the 24th minute when ex-Yeovil man, Andy Williams flicked the ball past the defender with his back to goal before chasing it down, he was through on goal and provided a cool left footed finish that went through the goalkeeper’s legs, 1-0.
It took just four more minutes before the home side had doubled their advantage when defender Joe Devera found he had both time and space. Devera started a surging run down the left hand side before crossing to an incoming James Collins for him to steer past the goalkeeper.
Williams was nearly in again when an complacent back pass left the keeper with a lot to do, the striker stretched for the ball before the incoming goalie clattered into him, picking up a substantial injury which resulted in him eventually being substituted for new arrival Chris Martin (44 mins).
41 minutes had gone and Yeovil had pulled one back when a header hit the bar before bouncing over the line, the goal had come against the run of play but Swindon restored their two goal cushion just moments later when a free kick taken by Ferry was met by Devera, his effort was saved but loanee Darren Ward was on hand to thump home the rebound and score his first goal for the Robins since his arrival. The break would have been welcomed by Yeovil as Swindon were in the ascendancy a good shift and clinical finishing saw them have a comfortable lead.
The second half had begun and long periods had passed with no real moments of significance, the game had evolved into a scrappy affair, free kicks were given left, right and centre none of which resulted in anything. Town winger Roberts was booked for kicking the ball away when a free kick was given, a minor offense in comparison to some that went unpunished.
The Glovers made a few chances as the game grew, striker Madden headed over when he should of really tested Wes. During another feisty exchange defender Webster received a yellow card after appearing to kick striker Martin while he was down injured. Frustration was growing both on and off the pitch winger Matt Ritchie felt cheated when a foul wasn’t given only for captain McCormack to bark “Matty, shut up!” to ensure he didn’t talk his way into trouble.
Swindon burst back into life in injury time when substitute Rafa De Vita swept the ball towards striker Collins before he ran towards the goal and curling his shot towards the far post, 4-1.
This was an impressive performance as both newbies made their debuts and Town played well. Defensive duo Ward and Devera were dominant in the air and worked well together. Di Canio will now look forward to Tuesday’s fixture that sees the return of former captain Jonathan Douglas.