Manager Gary Mills was forced into some changes ahead of the game against Swindon Town, a fit again Paul Heffernan was brought in for the departed Mark Stallard, Paul Boertien was brought in at Left-back for Kevin Nicholson and Frazer McHugh made his debut in the centre of midfield for Ian Baraclough who started, surprisingly, at centre back in place of the suspended Ian Richardson.
Notts started brightly and most good play coming from Caskey, Parkinson and Bolland. All attacking play in the first half came down both wings with Caskey time and again picking out Parkinson on the left to put in decent crosses which were unlucky not to find someone on the end of it.
The first real attempt on goal for Notts came in the tenth minute, just after Sam Parkin had narrowly driven over the bar at the other end. Parkinson, after a pass from Caskey accelerated from the halfway line, down the centre and shot from 25 yards, the shot had the placement but not the power and ‘keeper Rhys Evans made a comfortable save.
Notts continued to pressurise, but shots from Caskey, Bolland, Heffernan and Pipe all failed to trouble the keeper.
Then on 34 minutes and with their first shot on target, only their third a shot in total, BRIAN HOWARD slotted a low shot past the left hand post of former Swindon ‘keeper Steve Mildenhall, after Ian Baraclough had stood off Parkin to allow him to put in the pass.
Notts players heads then went down after the goal and from the re-start and the pleasing passing game that was being used by Notts was replaced by the familiar hoof it and hope strategy that we’ve had to put up with for the last two and a half years. Tony Hackworth then made his only contribution to the match a tackle in his own half and a pass to Caskey.
Half time 0-1
Notts came out and hammered at the Swindon defence some more but failed to trouble the ‘keeper with Frazer McHugh the closest just shooting over the bar from range,
Then in the 66th minute of the action Paul Heffernan was tripped in the area after good work from man of the match Paul Bolland, and a penalty was awarded. HEFFERNAN stepped up to take the kick, and as coolly as you like slotted home after sending the ‘keeper the wrong way.
Shaun Harrad was then brought on for Tony ‘How much money’ Hackworth, and Notts looked on course for the win but the Swindon defence held its nerve with defenders Alan Reeves and Matthew Haywood holding firm Notts couldn’t take the lead, not for the want of trying. With Heffernan and Parkinson shooting wide and high.
In the 85th minute and totally against the run of play Swindon broke and a David Duke cross picked out MOONEY at the back post and he beat Mildenhall, who should have done better as he didn’t close off his angles and allowed Swindon to take the points and condemn Notts to their seventh league home defeat of the season.
Schoolboy David McGoldrick came on for McHugh in the 86th minute to become the second youngest ever person to play for Notts in the league, and he didn’t look out of his depth as he ran down the wing and almost picked out Bolland.
Final Score: Notts County 1- 2 Swindon Town
Notts: Mildenhall, Pipe, Fenton, Baraclough, Boertien, Bolland, Caskey, McHugh (McGoldrick 86), Parkinson, Heffernan, Hackworth (Harrad 66)
Swindon: Evans, Heywood, Reeves, Nicholas, Robinson (O’Hanlon 83), Igoe, Hewlett, Duke, Howard (Smith 85), Mooney, Parkin
Refreshing Notts performance fails to clip Robins' wings.
The new-age old-school centre back.
Ran - yes, CASKEY RAN - the attacking play