BRANDON Ormonde-Ottewill’s late goal earned Swindon a point in a 1-1 draw at Bramall Lane.
The Town had fallen behind to an early Billy Sharp penalty but rallied in the second half and deservedly levelled with ten minutes to play.
Luke Williams made one change to the team that had beaten Crewe Alexandra the previous Saturday. Michael Doughty made his Town debut in place of Drissa Traore, who dropped to the substitutes’ bench.
Just eight minutes were on the clock when the Town fell behind. A combination of Jordan Turnbull and Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill brought Paul Coutts’ surging run into the box to a premature end and referee, Trevor Kettle pointed for a penalty. Billy Sharp strode up to the spot kick and drilled it confidently down the middle.
Despite the early set-back, the visitors set about finding a way back into proceedings. Jon Obika’s cross was just too long for Nicky Ajose while Fabien Robert registered a first shot on goal for the Town, volleying wide.
Obika was proving to be a handful for the Blades. After tracking back well into his own half to snaffle back possession, his neat back-heeled flick drifted just wide before his right-footed pile-driver whistled past the far post. The frontman had created the latter opportunity from a position out wide on the left.
The striker also saw a header loop into the arms of Blades ‘keeper, George Long before the half time whistle blew.
In stoppage time, Anton Rodgers flicked up a pass some 30 yards from goal before arrowing a volley over the crossbar.
Lawrence Vigouroux was called into action early on in the second half making a smart save at his near post before stretching to hold onto Billy Sharp’s snapshot.
After the initial pressure, Town began to grow into the game and started to create chances. Long cut out Robert’s cross before Ajose could pounce before the Frenchman saw an effort of his own drop just wide of the far post. Even Jordan Turnbull strode forward with the ball and fired an effort goalwards but couldn’t hit the target.
With just over ten minutes to play, Town found a deserved leveller. Following a prolonged spell of pressure, Yaser Kasim picked up possession on the edge of the box. His presence drew a number of United players to the ball before he calmly played a through-ball into the path of Ormonde-Ottewill who had found space inside the area. Shaping to shoot with his first touch, he cut back onto his right foot before drilling a shot inside the near post.
With their tails up and with confidence coursing through them, Town could have won the game at the death. Nathan Thompson – on as a substitute – found himself with a clear sight of goal at the far post but, not expecting the ball to come to him so quickly, could not adjust his feet to make a clean connection and sent his shot wide.
Another substitute, Jeremy Balmy also forced Long into a save before Rapha Branco’s late, goal-bound header was well fielded by the Blades’ keeper.