PETERBOROUGH 2 SWINDON TOWN 2: Robins grab crucial draw in JPT clash

PETERBOROUGH 2 SWINDON TOWN 2: Robins grab crucial draw in JPT clash

Swindon Town's Jay McEveley is sent off at Peterborough last night

Swindon Town's Nile Ranger slots home his goal against Peterborough last night

First published in Sport by

SWINDON Town produced one of their best away performances of the season to come from 2-0 down to finish the first leg of their Johnstone’s Paint Trophy area final clash with Peterborough level, but a pulsating encounter was overshadowed by concerns for a fan who collapsed late on at London Road.

The Robins defended with reckless abandon in the first 20 minutes of the game and found themselves two goals behind before they had the chance to draw breath. Raphael Branco planted a bullet header past his own goalkeeper and Kyle Vassell shot home from the edge of the box, but they found in themselves a gritty resolve that has so often been missing on the road this season to fight back into the game.

Nile Ranger raced onto Yaser Kasim’s pass to slide past Bobby Olejnik in the 31st minute and, despite losing Jay McEveley to a straight red card for a high challenge on Britt Assombalonga four minutes later, Shaun Brisley’s own goal hauled Town level at the break.

In the second period, both sides went hammer and tongs to net a crucial third but neither could breach the other’s defences. A simmering atmosphere inside London Road was sobered with five minutes of the match remaining after a home supporter was taken ill on the sidelines.

Posh fans quickly made the players and match officials aware of the situation and the two teams were taken back to the changing rooms while the fan received urgent medical treatment on the touchline before being taken to hospital via ambulance.

The two sides emerged again to play the final few moments of the game but by then football seemed of little consequence. Perspective was needed and, while Town have put themselves in a terrific position to reach Wembley, thoughts were elsewhere as journeys home were made.

Mark Cooper made five changes to the side which lost 1-0 to Oldham four days previously. Nile Ranger partnered Dany N’Guessan in a front two, with Michael Smith cup-tied, and Ben Gladwin came into a four-man midfield that also featured the returning Kasim. Having got over his knee injury, McEveley replaced the ineligible Jamie Reckord.

From the first kick of the game it became apparent that the mud-covered playing surface, combined with blustery winds, would make tidy, passing football nigh-on impossible.

Cooper had taken the common sense approach to the conditions, selecting bulk and physical presence over raw pace and skill on the ball, but the Robins fell behind to Posh’s first period of concerted pressure in the ninth minute.

A corner was swung in from the right and Branco stooped low in his own six-yard box to head beyond Foderingham. It was an excellent finish.

Swindon had started the match with relative composure but they were rattled by falling behind and, as quick as a flash, Posh were two goals to the good.

Branco and Ward ran into each other inside the Town area in their efforts to clear a loose ball and Vassell was on hand to mop up the chance, sweeping past Foderingham from 15 yards out. While the finish was clinical, Swindon’s defending was comical.

Danny Swanson curled a free-kick narrowly over the Town crossbar in the 19th minute while Vassell pitching wedged over from 15 yards after Robins players had failed to clear their lines on three separate occasions. The visitors, defending like Laurel & Hardy after a heavy duty night on the town, were clinging on to a two-goal deficit.

Gladwin had Town’s first effort in anger in the 23rd minute, jinking his way into the Posh box from right to left before firing over the bar, but within 60 seconds Peterborough were threatening again and Foderingham saved well low down after his defence afforded Vassell far too much time to strike at goal.

The Robins thought they had scored in the 28th minute when Grant McCann sliced a corner towards his own net, only for Olejnik to claim, but Swindon managed to find themselves a route back into the contest just after the half-hour mark. Louis Thompson broke free of his shackles in midfield and picked out Kasim, whose tidy throughball left Ranger to bear down on goal.

The striker showed tremendous coolness to open up his body and tuck the ball past Olejnik.

By now the Robins were showing real signs of intent going forward. In horrible conditions, Kasim and Massimo Luongo pulled the strings in the middle of midfield and Gladwin showed plenty of good touches wide on the right.

However, their chances of restoring parity were dealt a major blow in the 35th minute when full-back McEveley was sent off after a collision with Assombalonga. The dismissal looked harsh, though McEveley had raised his boot there seemed to intent to go at the Posh striker.

Nevertheless, Swindon were down to 10 men and an equaliser looked a long way off. Perhaps the travelling fans would have settled for 2-1 at the break. In the end they were dancing in the aisles as the half-time whistle blew.

Luongo teed up Gladwin down the right and former Marlow man sent a low cross in the box, which Brisley somehow contrived to slice past his own goalkeeper. It was the perfect finish.

Both teams came out after half-time looking for the goal that would nudge them in front in the tie. Swindon came close in the 54th minute when Ward’s 20-yard header floated narrowly wide of Olejnik’s left-hand post.

Nine minutes later, after Town withstood another period of concerted Posh pressure, Gladwin found himself in another goalscoring position after Luongo broke into the box, but the midfielder could only shoot high over the crossbar.

Louis Thompson was next to try his luck, but the teenager dragged an effort well wide, but with a man disadvantage Swindon were more than matching their hosts, who had lost all the spark they showed in the first 20 minutes.

In contrast, Town had hurdled their own incompetence in the early stages and were playing with a fluency the pitch and weather didn’t really afford to them.

Nathaniel Knight-Percival, who scored in Posh’s 2-1 defeat at the County Ground last month, had a glorious chance to steer Peterborough back into the lead with 10 minutes remaining but headed Danny Kearns’s right-wing corner from inside six yards.

The ground fell silent late in the game, and the players were escorted down the tunnel for a short period, after a fan collapsed in the home section of the crowd. Paramedics attended the supporter for around 15 minutes, conducting CPR, before the fan left London Road by ambulance.

When the players emerged again to complete the game the atmosphere had become sombre, practically silent. It was understandable.

Comments (20)

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6:40am Thu 6 Feb 14

We are PANTS says...

Well done Swindon, great result!! Now let's see if we can get 10,000 plus at the county ground to help finish the job?
Well done Swindon, great result!! Now let's see if we can get 10,000 plus at the county ground to help finish the job? We are PANTS
  • Score: 14

7:31am Thu 6 Feb 14

Since 1950 says...

As I said last night. Our best away performance of the season. After a disastrous first 20 minutes we just blew them away with some of the best passing game on a pitch which wouldn't have been playable had not the sky cameras been present. With Cooper playing a strong physical side, playing our big players, where N'Guesson was a revelation, posh didn't have an answer. If only we'd played like that on every away game!

COYR!
As I said last night. Our best away performance of the season. After a disastrous first 20 minutes we just blew them away with some of the best passing game on a pitch which wouldn't have been playable had not the sky cameras been present. With Cooper playing a strong physical side, playing our big players, where N'Guesson was a revelation, posh didn't have an answer. If only we'd played like that on every away game! COYR! Since 1950
  • Score: 11

7:44am Thu 6 Feb 14

street2000 says...

This is what we have all been saying all along. Give a good account of ourselves and you can stomach a loss. We played for a change last night and at 2-0 we still never felt or looked like we were going to lose the game!
This is what we have all been saying all along. Give a good account of ourselves and you can stomach a loss. We played for a change last night and at 2-0 we still never felt or looked like we were going to lose the game! street2000
  • Score: 3

7:51am Thu 6 Feb 14

Scouse Red says...

Since 1950 wrote:
As I said last night. Our best away performance of the season. After a disastrous first 20 minutes we just blew them away with some of the best passing game on a pitch which wouldn't have been playable had not the sky cameras been present. With Cooper playing a strong physical side, playing our big players, where N'Guesson was a revelation, posh didn't have an answer. If only we'd played like that on every away game!

COYR!
Agreed 1950. I think Cooper got his tactics and selection spot on, perhaps now he will learn that we need a bit of muscle especially away from home on boggy pitches, that being said i'd happily have had Pritch in had he not been suspended.

Hopefully we can get a decent crowd in, i don't think we've had more than about 8500 all season at home have we, Chelski match aside.

We can do them, they're far from good and our home record and pitch will be an asset.

Can we have some decent songs please Town End and what about coming out to something a bit decent as opposed to UB40! (cue the UB40 poster guy….which isn't me by the way!)

As someone once said, onwards and upwards
[quote][p][bold]Since 1950[/bold] wrote: As I said last night. Our best away performance of the season. After a disastrous first 20 minutes we just blew them away with some of the best passing game on a pitch which wouldn't have been playable had not the sky cameras been present. With Cooper playing a strong physical side, playing our big players, where N'Guesson was a revelation, posh didn't have an answer. If only we'd played like that on every away game! COYR![/p][/quote]Agreed 1950. I think Cooper got his tactics and selection spot on, perhaps now he will learn that we need a bit of muscle especially away from home on boggy pitches, that being said i'd happily have had Pritch in had he not been suspended. Hopefully we can get a decent crowd in, i don't think we've had more than about 8500 all season at home have we, Chelski match aside. We can do them, they're far from good and our home record and pitch will be an asset. Can we have some decent songs please Town End and what about coming out to something a bit decent as opposed to UB40! (cue the UB40 poster guy….which isn't me by the way!) As someone once said, onwards and upwards Scouse Red
  • Score: 1

8:02am Thu 6 Feb 14

eareds says...

Good all round performance, by our 10 men against their 12, Kasim's booking was the only downside. We of course wish the POSH fan who collapsed all the best. and a speedy recovery. Cooper got is absolutely right on the night, best £10 I have spent watching a match in ages
Good all round performance, by our 10 men against their 12, Kasim's booking was the only downside. We of course wish the POSH fan who collapsed all the best. and a speedy recovery. Cooper got is absolutely right on the night, best £10 I have spent watching a match in ages eareds
  • Score: 5

8:16am Thu 6 Feb 14

Graham8181 says...

Why oh why can't we consistently play like that. N'guessan had a great game as did ranger, in fact all of the team and what a header from ward that nearly loope the keeper. Even with 10 men the ball was in the posh half most of second half. Completely outplayed on all areas of the park. Good to see cooper showing some passion when we got the equaliser. I'd like to say keep this going but said it too many times. Posh don't look a dangerous team. Since their midfielder has gone they rated they don't have anyone of real danger. Well done you reds great game. Hope the posh fan is ok
Why oh why can't we consistently play like that. N'guessan had a great game as did ranger, in fact all of the team and what a header from ward that nearly loope the keeper. Even with 10 men the ball was in the posh half most of second half. Completely outplayed on all areas of the park. Good to see cooper showing some passion when we got the equaliser. I'd like to say keep this going but said it too many times. Posh don't look a dangerous team. Since their midfielder has gone they rated they don't have anyone of real danger. Well done you reds great game. Hope the posh fan is ok Graham8181
  • Score: 4

8:32am Thu 6 Feb 14

LeGod says...

Great performance and summed up by everyone else why cant we do this every away game. N'Guessan was superb and deserves a start saturday after that performance.
We played really well with 10 men and now lets go into saturday and put in the same performance at Port Vale (big test now).
Well done MC on the team selection and the performance.
Great performance and summed up by everyone else why cant we do this every away game. N'Guessan was superb and deserves a start saturday after that performance. We played really well with 10 men and now lets go into saturday and put in the same performance at Port Vale (big test now). Well done MC on the team selection and the performance. LeGod
  • Score: 4

8:59am Thu 6 Feb 14

bearwoodred says...

Radio 5L siad the fan taken ill last night was okayand not in any danger. Which is what you want to hear.
Radio 5L siad the fan taken ill last night was okayand not in any danger. Which is what you want to hear. bearwoodred
  • Score: 9

9:11am Thu 6 Feb 14

Oxon-Red says...

Good to hear the fan is okay, the silence was deafening while he was being treated.

Great performance, did the boys become men last night ?

COYMR
Good to hear the fan is okay, the silence was deafening while he was being treated. Great performance, did the boys become men last night ? COYMR Oxon-Red
  • Score: 6

9:48am Thu 6 Feb 14

6degreessouth says...

Any news on the Posh fan?
Any news on the Posh fan? 6degreessouth
  • Score: 0

9:50am Thu 6 Feb 14

Wilesy says...

Glad the fan is OK looked didn't look good at the time when they were trying to get his heart going.

On the football side thought we played some excellent stuff although overall a draw was probably a fair result.

Kamikaze defending at times from both sides, but that's the only negative from me I couldn't fault the commitment to the cause from any Town player, and a number of them - Ranger, N'Guessan, Gladwin, Louis, Luongo and Kasim really stood out as working hard and giving 110%.

The game was entertaining, I was pleased I went and win lose or draw that's what I hope to get out of a football match,

If someone had offered a draw before the game I would have taken it, and when you consider the cowfield pitch, the howling gale and the referee the result is all the better.

As for the ref well at the time it seemed every decision was going against us but in hindsight maybe he wasn't as bad as he appeared, the Jay sending off excluded where by all accounts he won the ball with eyes fully on it, so no intent. Not sure it will get rescinded though as it wasn't a 100% error.
Glad the fan is OK looked didn't look good at the time when they were trying to get his heart going. On the football side thought we played some excellent stuff although overall a draw was probably a fair result. Kamikaze defending at times from both sides, but that's the only negative from me I couldn't fault the commitment to the cause from any Town player, and a number of them - Ranger, N'Guessan, Gladwin, Louis, Luongo and Kasim really stood out as working hard and giving 110%. The game was entertaining, I was pleased I went and win lose or draw that's what I hope to get out of a football match, If someone had offered a draw before the game I would have taken it, and when you consider the cowfield pitch, the howling gale and the referee the result is all the better. As for the ref well at the time it seemed every decision was going against us but in hindsight maybe he wasn't as bad as he appeared, the Jay sending off excluded where by all accounts he won the ball with eyes fully on it, so no intent. Not sure it will get rescinded though as it wasn't a 100% error. Wilesy
  • Score: 2

10:22am Thu 6 Feb 14

RogerJ1969 says...

The comment on the matchday thread last night -

'What sort of cheese was that'

Made me laugh out loud just before 6am this morning.

What a game! I was in Huntingdon yesterday morning, almost shot over to Peterborough ,wish I had now.
We need to pack the CG for the 2nd leg, 3.5k there last night, if we can create that special CG atmos we'll have a least one trip to Wembley in the bag.
Apart from Rafa RB looking really nervous in the first 20mins it was a herioc performance from the 10 men. Jay was unlucky with the red card but I don't think we will win the appeal if we make one, the fella going off injured won't help.
If we can get TAH back Saturday, play Rafa left back (Don't rate Record), Pritchard in for Yas, play Gladwin centre with Mass we should carry on the good work, do we bring Smith in for Nile? I think not.
The comment on the matchday thread last night - 'What sort of cheese was that' Made me laugh out loud just before 6am this morning. What a game! I was in Huntingdon yesterday morning, almost shot over to Peterborough ,wish I had now. We need to pack the CG for the 2nd leg, 3.5k there last night, if we can create that special CG atmos we'll have a least one trip to Wembley in the bag. Apart from Rafa RB looking really nervous in the first 20mins it was a herioc performance from the 10 men. Jay was unlucky with the red card but I don't think we will win the appeal if we make one, the fella going off injured won't help. If we can get TAH back Saturday, play Rafa left back (Don't rate Record), Pritchard in for Yas, play Gladwin centre with Mass we should carry on the good work, do we bring Smith in for Nile? I think not. RogerJ1969
  • Score: 0

11:27am Thu 6 Feb 14

stfcjack says...

Very good result!
Hats off to the paramedics last night, sounds like he's going to be okay.
Very good result! Hats off to the paramedics last night, sounds like he's going to be okay. stfcjack
  • Score: 2

12:51pm Thu 6 Feb 14

stranglers says...

Very good result last night, especially given the circumstances, injuries, suspensions, the pitch, red card etc. More of the same please boys.
Very good result last night, especially given the circumstances, injuries, suspensions, the pitch, red card etc. More of the same please boys. stranglers
  • Score: 2

1:44pm Thu 6 Feb 14

port de soller says...

Just so good to see them play with guts and get stuck in with 10 men,great effort all round well done Town
Glad to hear the Posh Fan is recovering
Just so good to see them play with guts and get stuck in with 10 men,great effort all round well done Town Glad to hear the Posh Fan is recovering port de soller
  • Score: 1

2:57pm Thu 6 Feb 14

Winchester Man says...

Yes, a good result and away showing .... well done Town!! I'm looking forward to a tough winning 2nd leg, and revenge over the Spireites. My only disappointment was that the no' 2 keeper wasn't retained. Coops should have stayed loyal to him thru the JPT run - he's been central to getting Town this far.
Yes, a good result and away showing .... well done Town!! I'm looking forward to a tough winning 2nd leg, and revenge over the Spireites. My only disappointment was that the no' 2 keeper wasn't retained. Coops should have stayed loyal to him thru the JPT run - he's been central to getting Town this far. Winchester Man
  • Score: 0

4:07pm Thu 6 Feb 14

London Red says...

Guess he was worried about the rules - Ranger, N'Guessan, McEveley, Kasim and Gladwin all came in meaning that if Wes dropped out only 5 from Oldham would have started
.
Branco, McEveley, L.Thompson, Gladwin, N'Guessan don't meet the 75% rule and Ranger is border line as 21.75 appearances is needed and he has 21 - so guess if Bulford came in we wouldn't meet it that way either
.
It seems managers aways forget the game after also counts - so if he retains N.Thompson, Ward, L.Thompson, Luongo, Ranger and N'Guessan - which he is liklely to do we would meet the criteria!
.
Gladwin is also likely to remain in the side as Kasim is out - so that would be 7 from 10 - Plus will he drop Branco for Troy???? So that could be 8 of them!
.
So could have kept Bulford in if he really wanted.
Guess he was worried about the rules - Ranger, N'Guessan, McEveley, Kasim and Gladwin all came in meaning that if Wes dropped out only 5 from Oldham would have started . Branco, McEveley, L.Thompson, Gladwin, N'Guessan don't meet the 75% rule and Ranger is border line as 21.75 appearances is needed and he has 21 - so guess if Bulford came in we wouldn't meet it that way either . It seems managers aways forget the game after also counts - so if he retains N.Thompson, Ward, L.Thompson, Luongo, Ranger and N'Guessan - which he is liklely to do we would meet the criteria! . Gladwin is also likely to remain in the side as Kasim is out - so that would be 7 from 10 - Plus will he drop Branco for Troy???? So that could be 8 of them! . So could have kept Bulford in if he really wanted. London Red
  • Score: 1

5:11pm Thu 6 Feb 14

AdderB says...

Great result and our away fans deserve praise for noisy support.

Sorry for some concerns though which are mainly due to our bad discipline record. Nathan T could possibly have been sent off for his recklass tackle . He's already been booked many times ( 10 maybe.?) .
Kasim was booked and it was clear the Ref was fed up with his backchat. So he will be missing again for 2 matches
I agree Jay was a bit unlucky but again he will be badly missed as Recford does not fill me with Confidence .

Mark Cooper is often moaning about Refs but he needs to get a bit of self discipline from his players and try to stop the endless run of suspensions which may cost us a chance of a play off place.
Great result and our away fans deserve praise for noisy support. Sorry for some concerns though which are mainly due to our bad discipline record. Nathan T could possibly have been sent off for his recklass tackle . He's already been booked many times ( 10 maybe.?) . Kasim was booked and it was clear the Ref was fed up with his backchat. So he will be missing again for 2 matches I agree Jay was a bit unlucky but again he will be badly missed as Recford does not fill me with Confidence . Mark Cooper is often moaning about Refs but he needs to get a bit of self discipline from his players and try to stop the endless run of suspensions which may cost us a chance of a play off place. AdderB
  • Score: -1

5:20pm Thu 6 Feb 14

jayden says...

London Red wrote:
Guess he was worried about the rules - Ranger, N'Guessan, McEveley, Kasim and Gladwin all came in meaning that if Wes dropped out only 5 from Oldham would have started
.
Branco, McEveley, L.Thompson, Gladwin, N'Guessan don't meet the 75% rule and Ranger is border line as 21.75 appearances is needed and he has 21 - so guess if Bulford came in we wouldn't meet it that way either
.
It seems managers aways forget the game after also counts - so if he retains N.Thompson, Ward, L.Thompson, Luongo, Ranger and N'Guessan - which he is liklely to do we would meet the criteria!
.
Gladwin is also likely to remain in the side as Kasim is out - so that would be 7 from 10 - Plus will he drop Branco for Troy???? So that could be 8 of them!
.
So could have kept Bulford in if he really wanted.
Its Belford LR you really must learn his name.
[quote][p][bold]London Red[/bold] wrote: Guess he was worried about the rules - Ranger, N'Guessan, McEveley, Kasim and Gladwin all came in meaning that if Wes dropped out only 5 from Oldham would have started . Branco, McEveley, L.Thompson, Gladwin, N'Guessan don't meet the 75% rule and Ranger is border line as 21.75 appearances is needed and he has 21 - so guess if Bulford came in we wouldn't meet it that way either . It seems managers aways forget the game after also counts - so if he retains N.Thompson, Ward, L.Thompson, Luongo, Ranger and N'Guessan - which he is liklely to do we would meet the criteria! . Gladwin is also likely to remain in the side as Kasim is out - so that would be 7 from 10 - Plus will he drop Branco for Troy???? So that could be 8 of them! . So could have kept Bulford in if he really wanted.[/p][/quote]Its Belford LR you really must learn his name. jayden
  • Score: 1

9:47pm Thu 6 Feb 14

END_UB40 (it's lame) says...

Scouse Red wrote:
Since 1950 wrote:
As I said last night. Our best away performance of the season. After a disastrous first 20 minutes we just blew them away with some of the best passing game on a pitch which wouldn't have been playable had not the sky cameras been present. With Cooper playing a strong physical side, playing our big players, where N'Guesson was a revelation, posh didn't have an answer. If only we'd played like that on every away game!

COYR!
Agreed 1950. I think Cooper got his tactics and selection spot on, perhaps now he will learn that we need a bit of muscle especially away from home on boggy pitches, that being said i'd happily have had Pritch in had he not been suspended.

Hopefully we can get a decent crowd in, i don't think we've had more than about 8500 all season at home have we, Chelski match aside.

We can do them, they're far from good and our home record and pitch will be an asset.

Can we have some decent songs please Town End and what about coming out to something a bit decent as opposed to UB40! (cue the UB40 poster guy….which isn't me by the way!)

As someone once said, onwards and upwards
He's from Iraq and wears 15 on his back,
Yasser Kassim, Yasser Kassim!

You can have that one for free!

And Power must do the decent thing and bin the Brummie Dummies and End UB-40, it's lame.
[quote][p][bold]Scouse Red[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Since 1950[/bold] wrote: As I said last night. Our best away performance of the season. After a disastrous first 20 minutes we just blew them away with some of the best passing game on a pitch which wouldn't have been playable had not the sky cameras been present. With Cooper playing a strong physical side, playing our big players, where N'Guesson was a revelation, posh didn't have an answer. If only we'd played like that on every away game! COYR![/p][/quote]Agreed 1950. I think Cooper got his tactics and selection spot on, perhaps now he will learn that we need a bit of muscle especially away from home on boggy pitches, that being said i'd happily have had Pritch in had he not been suspended. Hopefully we can get a decent crowd in, i don't think we've had more than about 8500 all season at home have we, Chelski match aside. We can do them, they're far from good and our home record and pitch will be an asset. Can we have some decent songs please Town End and what about coming out to something a bit decent as opposed to UB40! (cue the UB40 poster guy….which isn't me by the way!) As someone once said, onwards and upwards[/p][/quote]He's from Iraq and wears 15 on his back, Yasser Kassim, Yasser Kassim! You can have that one for free! And Power must do the decent thing and bin the Brummie Dummies and End UB-40, it's lame. END_UB40 (it's lame)
  • Score: 0

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