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MATCH REPORT: Swindon Town 1-2 Walsall…

Ellis Iandolo strike in vain as Town concede late to suffer Boxing Day defeat…

26 December 2022

Club News

MATCH REPORT: Swindon Town 1-2 Walsall…

Ellis Iandolo strike in vain as Town concede late to suffer Boxing Day defeat…

26 December 2022

Ellis Iandolo struck his first goal of the season to give Town a first-half lead, but it ended up proving a consolation as Walsall netted late to snatch the points at The County Ground and claim a 2-1 win.

An unfortunate own goal from Remeao Huton saw Michael Flynn’s side force an equaliser in first-half added time, and then go on to repeat the feat in the second forty-five to break Town hearts.

In a game of few clear-cut chances, Scott Lindsey named an unchanged starting eleven from the win at Barrow in the Robins last League Two fixture, with Saidou Khan and Ben Gladwin returning to the fold with places on the bench.

Swindon looked to start brightly in the opening few minutes, and Marcel Lavinier forced Walsall keeper Owen Evans to be alert after a game of head tennis in the visitors box after just 120-seconds, but the former Tottenham man was unable to generate any power on his close range header and the Saddlers stopper gathered with ease.

That was the only chance we saw for the sixteen minutes that ensued until Walsall carved out their first opportunity of the afternoon on eighteen.

Tom Knowles swung in a free-kick from deep on the right that somehow found it’s way to Danny Johnson just inside the box, but he snatched at his first-time effort and sent it high over Sol Brynn’s bar.

There still wasn’t much to choose between the two sides as the first-half minutes ticked down with chances at both ends at a premium, until we reached the thirty-second minute.

A defense-splitting long ball from Jonny Williams from inside his own half set Ronan Darcy free down the right side, and his dangerous cutback across the face of goal was met by the onrushing Ellis Iandolo.

Despite his first attempt being parried by Owen Evans in the Walsall goal, the midfielder was on hand to adjust his body and acrobatically convert the rebound to give Town the lead.

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However, deep into first-half stoppage time, another floated Tom Knowles cross, whipped in from the right at waist height, evaded everyone, and in Remeao Hutton’s attempt to clear the ball, it skidded off his head at pace and straight into the bottom left-hand corner of the net, leaving Sol Brynn with no chance.

A real sucker punch for Town, who had probably edged the first forty-five.

But Swindon responded well and almost regained the lead shortly after as we entered the sixth minute of stoppage time, as Frazer Blake-Tracy rose highest to head a Hutton cross from the right at goal, forcing Owen Evans to stretch and parry the ball away to his left, as both sides went in level at the interval.

The second period started like the first, with both sides cancelling each other out and chances few and far between.

Scott Lindsey shuffled the pack on fifty-six minutes, as goal scorer Ellis Iandolo and forward Jacob Wakeling made way for Ben Gladwin and Rushian Hepburn-Murphy respectively, and there seemed to be fresh impetus to Town’s attacking play as they enjoyed a dominant spell of possession, but still Walsall held firm.

On seventy-six minutes, a dangerous Walsall break saw them work the ball well to Danny Johnson inside the Town box and almost take the lead.

The forward was allowed time to compose himself and strike at goal from close range, but Sol Brynn did well to stand strong and repel the effort – a real let off for Swindon.

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With five minutes of normal time remaining, Walsall looked to try their luck again in a bid to take the lead, as Saddlers sub Conor Wilkinson created space for himself on the edge of the Town area before shooting powerfully at goal, and although it appeared to have the outstretched Brynn beaten, it sailed wide of the right hand post.

However, we were to see late drama at The County Ground as Walsall snatched all three points in the ninety-forth minute.

A lengthy stoppage as Frazer Blake-Tracy was treated for a head injury saw the visitors launch a looping corner into the box with the Town defender receiving treatment pitch side, and Emmanuel Monthe was on hand to poke the ball past Sol Brynn from close range resulting in rapturous celebrations from the 465 visiting Saddlers fans.

A really tough result to take for Swindon who slip a place to fifth in the table and now turn their attentions to Northampton Town on Thursday.

MATCH INFORMATION:

Swindon Town Line-up: 4-3-3

1. Sol Brynn (GK) – 22. Marcel Lavinier, 20. Frazer Blake-Tracy, 21. Angus MacDonald ©, 2. Remeao Hutton, 5. Louis Reed, 3. Ellis Iandolo (7. Ben Gladwin 56mins), 10. Ronan Darcy, 8. Jonny Williams, 28. Tyrese Shade (33. Morgan Roberts 78mins), 24. Jacob Wakeling (19. Rushian Hepburn-Murphy 56mins).

Subs not used: 41. Jack Copland (GK) – 31. Harrison Minturn, 9. Tomi Adeloye, 23. Saidou Khan.

Scorers: Iandolo 33

Yellow Cards: 21. MacDonald 51mins, Steve Mildenhall 37mins.

Red Cards: None

HT: 1-1

Walsall Line-up: 3-4-1-2

1. Owen Evans (GK) – 2. Hayden White, 6. Emmanuel Monthe, 5. Donervon Daniels ©, 17. Jack Earing, 30. Liam Bennett, 3. Liam Gordon (9. Conor Wilkinson 71mins), 8. Liam Kinsella, 39. Danny Johnson (15. Douglas James-Taylor 85mins), 23. Isaac Hutchinson (16. Jacob Maddox 71mins), 10. Tom Knowles.

Subs not used: 18. Oisin McEntee, 21. Taylor Allen, 14. Brandon Comley, 11. Andy Williams.

Scorers: Hutton og 45+1, Monthe 90+4

Yellow Cards: 39. Johnson 45+1mins.

Red Cards: None

Referee: James Oldham

Assistant Referees: Jack Clench & Marvyn Amphlett

Fourth Official: Jake Topp

Attendance: 10,240 (465 away fans)


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