BRENTFORD 2 (Saunders PEN '72, Donaldson '76)
TOWN 1 (Ferry '32)
TOWN were stunned by a second-half Brentford comeback and were beaten 2-1 at Griffin Park.
Despite taking a first-half lead, Swindon couldn’t hang on and conceded two quick-fire goals after the break as Kevin MacDonald tasted defeat for the first time as manager.
Kevin MacDonald made just one change to the starting line-up with Adam Rooney promoted from the bench to partner Andy Williams in attack. James Collins, the man he replaced, was named among the substitutes.
On a bitterly cold night in West London, Town made the early running with Jay McEveley testing Simon Moore with an early drive. Gary Roberts then stood a corner up to the middle and Aden Flint powered a header goalwards that was blocked by a combination of red and white striped shirts.
With twenty minutes on the clock the visitors missed a golden opportunity to go in front. Clayton Donaldson beat Darren Ward to a bouncing ball and found himself one-on-one with Foderingham. Advancing on goal, the frontman stabbed his effort harmlessly wide.
Town heeded to the warning and on the half hour took the lead. Gary Roberts robbed the defender and slid the ball into the onrushing Simon Ferry. The Scotsman checked back onto his right foot, steadied himself and drove his effort beyond the ‘keeper and into the net.
Seconds later it should have been 2-0. With the home side hesitant in defence, Andy Williams lifted a ball across to the unmarked Roberts but the winger managed to take a layer of paint off the right upright with a thunderous volley and the ball cannoned away to safety.
Before the half was up, Andy Williams latched onto a through-ball and rounded the goalkeeper but from a tight angle saw his shot blocked behind by a defender.
The second period began in an equally frantic manner. McCormack’s floated free-kick picked out Ward and the defender’s flicked header was easily pouched by Moore.
Just short of the hour mark, Town had the ball in the back of the net once again but were denied by the linesman’s flag. Ferry’s flat cross was flicked on by Ward and the Town skipper touched the ball home only to wheel away and find that the linesman had adjudged him to have been in an offside position.
With just over 15 minutes left to play the home side levelled from the spot. Foderingham clipped Clayton Donaldson and Sam Saunders drilled home the resultant penalty.
Just four minutes later Brentford were in front. A cross came over to Donaldson and the forward controlled the bouncing ball before lashing home past Foderingham.
As Town pushed forward for an equaliser, the home side almost capitalised on the gaps left in defence but Bradley Wright-Phillips was denied by a superb save from Foderingham.
Town were indebted to their stopper again just one minute from time. A poorly-timed back pass from one of the Swindon players landed perfectly at the feet of Donaldson however, one-on-one the goalkeeper made a fantastic save to deny him.
In injury time, the visitors loaded the box and substitute James Collins saw his looping header plucked off the line by Moore.
Town: Wes Foderingham; Nathan Thompson, Darren Ward, Aden Flint, Jay McEveley; Simon Ferry, Alan McCormack (Capt), Tommy Miller (Miller '84), Gary Roberts (Rooney L); Adam Rooney, Andy Williams (De Vita '88)
Substitutes not used: Leigh Bedwell (GK), Joe Devera, Alan Navarro, Louis Thompson
Booked: Flint '53
Attendance: 5,867 (1,553)