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MATCH REPORT: Swindon Town 1-1 Crawley Town

Reds snatch a point

2 February 2022

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Swindon Town left it late to rescue a point in a 1-1 draw with Crawley Town in the EFL Sky Bet League Two at The County Ground on Tuesday night.

Jack Powell's penalty late in the first-half gave the visitors a slender lead at the break, but Ben Gladwin's deflected strike ensured the Reds came out of the contest with a point.

Town Head Coach Ben Garner opted for three changes with on-loan Swansea City defender Brandon Cooper making his debut, while Ben Gladwin and Ryan East came into the fold with Jonny Williams and Louis Reed dropping to the bench. 

There was also a place amongst the subs for January addition Louie Barry, on loan from Premier League outfit Aston Villa, as the Reds named a very strong bench.

Town started with a real attacking intent as Harry McKirdy flashed a dangerous ball across goal which was met by Ben Gladwin, and his shot forced a good stop from Glenn Morris in the visiting goal.

McKirdy was then off-target with a shot after driving into space, before Ellis Iandolo's wicked cross was hacked out for a corner, which led to Jake O'Brien dinking a header into the arms of Morris.

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It was all Town as they launched wave after wave of attack on the Crawley goal, with the latest foray forwards resulting in the dangerous Iandolo curling a superb shot inches wide of the post.

Rob Hunt then nodded down the ball in the path of Josh Davison who was just off-target with a well-hit drive, before the visitors enjoyed a spell of pressure.

Tom Nicholls hooked an effort inches wide before his low shot was gathered by Jojo Wollacott, and the Town keeper had to be alert to beat away a drive by Crawley's Jack Payne with Town eventually clearing their lines.

And it was the visitors who took the lead with 40 minutes played. Jordan Lyden committed a foul on James Tilley inside the box as a corner was played in, and it was left up to Jack Powell to step up and hammer home the resulting spot kick to give his team the lead.

Tilley's cross was only half dealt with by Wollacott and he did well to recover and gather Powell's header, while at the other end Town attempted to go in level at the break but McKirdy could only fire wide from Iandolo's cross.

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HALF-TIME: SWINDON TOWN 0-1 CRAWLEY TOWN 

In order to try and turn things around, the Reds made a change at half-time as Louie Barry came on to make his Town debut, replacing Josh Davison who had also picked up a knock.

Barry nearly made an instant impression as his first-time snap-shot flew into the side netting, before Jonny Williams came on to replace Ryan East as Town looked to add a much-needed attacking spark to their play.

Ben Gladwin fired a well-hit drive just over the bar with more than an hour played, while Tilley fired over from a tight angle at the other end.

McKirdy's low shot was smothered by Morris as the game entered the final 20-minutes, before Jayden Mitchell-Lawson replaced Dion Conroy as Town attempted to change the dynamic of their play.

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Tyler Frost won the ball back and drove forward before flashing a shot inches wide, and that missed chance gave Town a way back into the game and they took it with Gladwin's shot taking a deflection before nestling into the back of the net.

There was five minutes added on with the momentum firmly in the Reds' favour, but they were unable to muster up a late winner and had to settle for a point instead, with Louis Reed being sent off for dissent after the final whistle.

FINAL SCORE: SWINDON TOWN 1-1 CRAWLEY TOWN 

TEAMS AND STATS

SWINDON TOWN - Wollacott; Iandolo, Conroy (C) (Jayden Mitchell-Lawson 82), Gladwin, Lyden, Davison (Louie Barry 45), McKirdy, Cooper, O'Brien, Hunt, East (Jonny Williams 60). 

SUBS NOT USED - Ward, Odimayo, Reed, Aguiar. 

SCORERS - Ben Gladwin (90).

BOOKED - Jordan Lyden, Harry McKirdy.

SENT-OFF - Louis Reed.

CRAWLEY TOWN - Morris; Davies (Ludwig Francillette 45), Tunnicliffe, Craig, Tsaroulla, Tilley, Powell, Payne, Nichols, Grego-Cox (Tyler Frost 65), Nadesan (Mark Marshall 77). 

SUBS NOT USED - Seymour, Gallagher, Matthews.

SCORERS - Jack Powell (40).

BOOKED - Tom Nicholls, Nick Tsaroulla, Jack Powell.

REFEREE - Carl Brook.

Attendance - 7,306 (131 Away Fans). 


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