Swindon 1 Mansfield Town 2
23rd November 2019
Swindon made it five successive victories on the spin in league 2 and retained their top of the tree ranking thanks to yet another Eoin Doyle winner.
The post denied Swindon and the returning Paul Caddis a dream start 8 minutes in. Ex league winning captain Caddis made his first start since May 2012 after returning for a second stint at Town last week. Antony Grant switced play to Caddis on the right flank, Caddis then cut inside on to his left foot and unleashed a curling strike. The shot beat the scrambling Mansfield keeper but it couldn't beat the post as Mansfield were able to clear.
Swindon were rewarded for their early dominance half way through the first half. Antony Grant charged from his own half towards the left wing, there he was able to combine in a one two with Jerry Yates. Grant's cross was only cleared to the back post where Kaiyne Woolery was lurking, Woolery hooked the ball back into the 12 yard box where he found England's leading goal scorer Eoin Doyle. Doyle converted the chance with a smart finish into the bottom left corner on the volley for his 17th of the season.
10 minutes before the break Swindon nearly had a goal to show for a brilliant team move. Jerry Yates chipped a delicate ball over the Mansfield defence to Michael Doughty, Doughty then knocked the ball down to the on rushing Eoin Doyle on the edge of the penalty area. Doyle's shot however was well saved by the Mansfield keeper and the ball was headed to safety after it came of the bar.
Just before the interval Steven Benda made a crucial intervention to prevent Nicky Maynard 1 on 1 getting a shot away for the Stags.
In the second half Swindon put in a determined shift while riding out their luck at times. Mansfield dominated the opening stages of the first half. Steven Benda managed to tip over from an Andy Cook header following a bit of ping ball in the box. But arguably the best chance fell to Nicky Maynard. A Zeki Fryers header went backwards to Maynad and despite a slip from keeper Benda Maynad still somehow managed to find the side netting.
This prompted Richie Wellens to change to 3 at the back bringing on out of favour centre back Tom Broadbent. Broadbent helped to match the physicality of Mansfield and also helped the ariel battle. From there on in Swindon looked much better defensively and were able to ride the game out without Mansfield looking to much of a threat.
Antony Grant had another brilliant game and as a front three Woolery, Yates and Doyle worked incredibly hard. Paul Caddis also picked up man of the match. The most pleasing aspect of the performance was seeing Swindon be able to defend a lead for a period of time. This is a quality Swindon have lacked for a while. After being knocked out the FA Cup last weekend Swindon don't play next Saturday so they will next be in action on the 7th of December away at Grimsby town.