After an impressive finale to pre season, there was a sense of optimism ahead of the season opener with Swindon. Unfortunately for the Iron, the hosts quickly dampened spirits as a mixture of woeful defending and excellent attacking carved United apart, as Swindon raced into a two goal lead in the opening twelve minutes.
Just three minutes on the clock and United were welcomed back into League One by their hosts in the most impressive style. The orchestrator Luongo, tapped into Gladwin who quickly spread play to Byrne. The Iron all at sea as Byrne unleashed a ferocious cross that the impressive Aussie Luongo flicked into the top corner. Pre match optimism crushed in an instant.
Ten minutes later and Swindon were at it again. Their young, hungry players dragging an experienced Iron side all over the County Ground pitch. This time, the excellent Kasim with a delicious through ball carving the Iron’s defence in two. Llera beaten all ends up, scrambled back in vain, but could only watch as Michael Smith hammered the ball across the box past Slocombe. Swindon good value and threatening to run riot.
To their credit, the Iron rallied and should have gone in level. The left boot of McSheffrey fizzed a delightful ball across the face of the goal. Madden desperately lunged but couldn’t turn it home and Myrie-Williams header was fumbled over by Fodderingham as he steamed in at the far stick.
Soon after, they had reduced the deficit. A deserved lifeline. A pump forward was deftly flicked by the excellent Burton. Madden raced onto it and calmly slotted home for his first of the season. 2-1.
Swindon, for all their good attacking play looked shaky at the back and the Iron grew in confidence. Myrie-Williams lashed an effort just over, before whipping in a teasing, dipping ball that evaded everyone including McSheffrey who was millimeters away from the equaliser.
Then, Madden should have buried his second, only for the defender to somehow clear off his own goal line.
Against the run of play Swindon effectively put the game to bed. A sucker punch but another move that saw the Iron run ragged. Luongo released Gladwin again, who smashed against the base of the post. The rebound cruelly fell into the path of Smith, who bundled home. Some people get all the luck.
The second half saw Swindon dominate large parts and the Iron’s misery was compounded late on when Williams tussled with Thomson. A fracas erupted and the frustrated Williams idiotically proceeded to floor the Swindon player, grabbing him round the neck and wrestling him to the floor right infront of former Premier League referee Stuart Attwell. Williams walked and the Iron’s first game back in League One ended in a defeat.
Ratings: Slocombe 5, Williams 4, Llera 4, Canavan 4, Nolan 4, McSheffrey 4, McAlister 5, Bishop 4, Syers, Sparrow 5, Myrie Williams 4, Burton 6, Madden 6, Taylor 5,