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Match preview: Swindon Town


Friday 12 January 2018
FGR Media


The County Ground

We make the short trip to Swindon Town tomorrow in search of back-to-back wins in League Two for the first time since October.

New signing Haydn Hollis will be available for selection as FGR look to repeat the result secured at the County Ground in the Checkatrade Trophy earlier in the season.

What we said:

"It's still three points. It's a game that we want to win and we want to follow on from last Saturday," said Mark Cooper.

"Swindon is a big club in League Two, a big crowd, big stadium. They will be hoping to get the points to try and get back in the play-off picture and we need the three points for a different reason.

“They have some experienced players and they just waited for us to make those mistakes (in our last league game with them).

“They’ve had some good results. They beat Notts County a couple of weeks ago, they won away at Barnet and we are aware it is going to be a tough game. We’ll have to play as well as we did last week to get any points.”

"Hopefully it's not too far for our fans to travel and they go there in their numbers.”

What they said:

“They have got a certain way of playing, Mark has always done that. I think that has been his philosophy and Forest Green’s philosophy throughout a long period,” said David Flitcroft.

“It is difficult when you come up into this league. It is about being robust and staying in games and being resilient.

“I think Mark has been able to get to the window, reassess what they have done and maybe change things and go with more robust players and stronger players.

“He has definitely gone down a different route in terms of recruitment and the DNA of a player to maybe combat that physicality that in League Two you do encounter week in, week out against all types of different teams.

“Certainly they look stronger and more robust through the recruitment strategy in January.”

Injury news:

Forest Green Rovers

Dale Bennett remains the only player left on the treatment table with his ankle injury, as he looks to return to working with the ball next week.

Charlie Cooper will also miss the game as he serves the second game of his three-match suspension.

Swindon Town

Left-back Chris Hussey, who has been out of action since September, underwent surgery for a hernia tear on Thursday.

Midfielder Timi Elsnik, who has also had a significant spell on the sidelines since November, is poised to return to the squad within 10 days.

Attacker Donal McDermott has suffered a groin injury, while James Brophy is available for this weekend's game.

About: Swindon Town

When we last played Swindon in the Checkatrade Trophy, they were in the midst of a losing streak that last five games.

They were able to bring a halt to that with a 3-0 win over Crewe Alexandra but that was followed up by a 5-0 humbling at home to high-flyers Luton Town at the County Ground.

That sparked David Flitcroft to reassess and moved to playing three at the back against Notts County, with Matt Preston, Chris Robertson and skipper Olly Lancashire.

It has made the Robins a lot more solid at the back, keeping a clean sheet in their 1-0 win over County before beating Barnet 2-1 on the Monday.

Swindon were without a game last weekend and will be well rested for tomorrow’s trip as they look to move back into the play-off spots, sitting just two points outside the top seven at present.

Key player:

Kaiyne Woolery:

A familiar name to Forest Green fans after his goals last season helped the club to promotion from the National League.

Mark Cooper and the rest of the backroom staff will be fully aware of the risk the 23-year-old poses, with his electric pace but also has developed his strength on the ball under Flitcroft.

Woolery has formed a partnership up top with Luke Norris in recent games, with Keshi Anderson playing in behind and has two goals in his last five outings.

Last time we met:

Christian Doidge's late strike earned FGR a place in the last 16 of the Checkatrade Trophy last month.

Doidge broke the deadlock after 80 minutes in a nervy game at Swindon Town's County Ground as FGR progress to the next round.

The visitors would, with just 10 minutes to play, take the lead. Dan Wishart found Reece Brown in the middle of the park and the young midfielder’s threaded through-ball was perfectly weighted for Doidge who, despite being initially denied by the legs of Lawrence Vigouroux, tucked home.

As the game progressed into added time, both sides had a man sent off. Keshi Anderson and Dale Bennet were given their marching orders for two separate bookable offences.

Head-to-head:

Saturday will be the fourth meeting between the two sides, with two of those already coming this season.

David Flitcroft’s side took the honours in the league fixture courtesy of late goals from Olly Lancashire and Matty Taylor, while Christian Doidge’s strike was the difference between the two sides in the Checkatrade Trophy.

The only other meeting between the two sides came in an epic FA Cup encounter back in 2007, where goals from Stuart Fleetwood and Mark Beesley weren’t enough to prevent a 3-2 win for Town.

Coverage

Full commentary of Saturday’s match will be available on BBC Radio Gloucestershire on FM and 1413 AM, as well as through the club’s digital audio offering – Green Devils Live.

Stay up to date also on Twitter by following @FGRFC_Official, which will have all of the team news before kick-off and updates throughout the game.

There will also be key updates and team news on Facebook. Round-up the clash by checking out the club website where there will be a full report looking back on the encounter.

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Match Report
Pos Club P GD PT
21 Yeovil 28 -12 28
22 Chesterfield 29 -22 27
23 Forest Green 28 -19 26
24 Barnet 28 -15 21
Last updated: Sat 20 Jan 2018 17:28 pm