Match Preview: Swindon Town vs Crewe

Form Guide… 

6th placed Swindon lost 2-0 at Sheffield United at the weekend to make three defeats in a row and five games without a victory. Town are 20th in the League One form table with one win, two draws and three defeats, which is hardly promotion form at the business end of the season…

At the County Ground, Town have drawn their previous three games and are without a win in six games. Their last victory as hosts was on the 19th January and a 2-0 win over Shrewsbury Town. As hosts, Swindon are 23rd in the form table with five draws and one defeat.

Johnstone’s Paint Trophy winners Crewe Alexandra are 13th with 58 points and only a mid-table position to play for. Alex’ have lost their previous two games and 17th in the form table with two wins, one draw and three defeats.

On their Travels, Crewe drew 2-2 at Bury in their previous League One away game and are 11th in the form table with two wins, two draws and two defeats. Head-to-Head…

In all League, FA Cup and Football League competitions, Town have faced Crewe on 27 occasions, winning 11, drawing 4 and defeated 12 times; scoring 26 and conceding 29.

At the County Ground, Swindon have a record of 7 wins, 3 draws and 3 defeats, scoring 15 and conceding 9.

Swindon have been beaten in the two previous meetings, in which Crewe scored two goals in each game.

Crewe haven’t won in Swindon in three visits. Their last victory being a 3-1 win in December 2002.

Town have only failed to score twice as hosts versus Crewe.

The Stats…

Defence Attack
  STFC (Hosts) r Crewe (Away) r   STFC (Hosts) r Crewe (Away) r
Shots Against Per Game 5.7 1 14.1 24 Shots For Per Game 11.6 13 8.5 19
% Shots Against on Target 37.8% 1 53.4% 19 % Shots For on Target 45.7% 20 59.2% 2
% Save Rate 68.9% 21 77.9% 10 % Strike Rate 15.2% 2 15.1% 3
Corners Against Per Game 3.2 2 5 5 Corners Won Per Game 7.5 2 4.6 19
Possession Conceded 47.7% 9 51% 8 Possession Won 52.3% 9 49% 8
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 | 1 equals the best and 24 is the worst |

As hosts Swindon do remain efficient in defence, however the problem remains the odd defensive lapse giving the opposition the one and only chance they need to frustrate Town.

Equally worrying is the lack of goals with only 3 scored in the 6 games since the 2-0 win over Shrewsbury. Comparing Swindon’s attacking efficiency between before the Hartlepool game and now, it’s interesting to see that Town have improved in terms of shots for per game (11.4 to 11.6), corners won per game (7.2 to 7.5) and increased possession (51.8% to 52.3%), however a lack of clinical shooting and a 4.3% drop in shots on target appears to be the main culprit in reducing the % strike rate from 18.7% to 15.2%.

Crewe are the opposite in attack, having few chances per game from fair amount of possession, yet they know how to find the back of the net with 59.2% of all shots on target and a effective strike rate of 15.1%.

SCORED 1-15 16-30 31-45 45+ 46-60 61-75 76-90 90+
STFC (as hosts) 6  7 5 0 4 8 6 1
Crewe (away) 5  3 5 1 4 4 4 1

Swindon typically start strong as hosts having opened the scoring in eight of their previous eleven games at the County Ground. Opening the scoring has been crucial to Town’s success with Swindon losing their previous two games as host when conceding first – versus Brentford and Bury.

Crewe’s goals scored are spread around relatively equally throughout the 90 minutes…

CONCEDED 1-15 16-30 31-45 45+ 46-60 61-75 76-90 90+
STFC (as hosts) 2 1 3 0 4 3 1 0
Crewe (away) 8 7 3 1 4 2 8 2

Swindon’s goal conceded at home versus Walsall in the 90th minute was our first in the later phase of the game as hosts this season.

Crewe appear to be susceptible at conceding early in games and in the final 15 minutes plus stoppages.

In their previous two away games, Crewe have  conceded four goals, all in the second half.

My prediction… 

We surely must win and Town cannot settle for a draw or defeat. All the sides down to Crawley in 11th are thinking they are the ones to mount a late push for the play-off place and their sights are firmly set on Swindon’s faltering form.

It’ll probably be another draw, probably goalless…

Come on You Reds!

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