TOWN earned a point in a battling 0-0 draw against table-topping Sheffield United.
Danny Wilson’s return to The County Ground yielded no goals as both sides came away with a share of the spoils.
Paolo Di Canio made four changes to the team that was dumped out of the FA Cup at the weekend and it would prove to be a starting line-up that made a bit of history: Nathan and Louis Thompson became the first brothers to play together in the first team for Swindon Town since May 1947.
Town looked an improved outfit to the one that had lost on Saturday and had the better of the opening half. With just two minutes on the clock Matt Ritchie almost broke the deadlock with a fine effort. His dipping, left-footed volley from the right flank didn’t quite drop enough and crashed behind off the crossbar.
Ritchie would have another effort that skewed wide while James Collins headed wide and Simon Ferry headed at the goalkeeper.
Minutes later, after being urged to shoot from the edge of the area, Ferry saw his low drive turned round the post. In time added on, Joe Devera nodded wide from a corner.
Early in the second period, Gary Roberts became the second Town player to rattle the woodwork as his drive from inside the area cannoned back off the upright and away to safety. Chances were at a premium all game long but Collins managed to glance wide after being picked out by Louis Thompson’s lofted cross-field ball.
As the timer neared 90 minutes, the visitors might have won the game after a melee in the Swindon box. Firstly, Jay McEveley was in the right place to block an effort on the line. As the ball came back to another Sheffield United player, three Town players read the danger and threw themselves in front of the effort before the ball was eventually hacked clear.
As he had done in the first half, Wes Foderingham had to be alert to hold onto McDonald’s drive late on.
A point against the table-topping Blades will be a welcome tonic after Saturday’s defeat. Town’s next test is at the Banks’ Stadium on Saturday when they face Walsall.
Town: Wes Foderingham, Nathan Thomspon, Joe Devera, Darren Ward, Jay McEveley, Matt Ritchie, Simon Ferry (Capt), Louis Thompson, Gary Roberts, James Collins, Andy Williams
Substitutes: Leigh Bedwell, Troy Archibald-Henville, Paul Benson, Raffaele De Vita, Adam Rooney, Aaron Oakley, Miles Storey