A forgotten face keeps our dreams alive
3:30pm Thursday 24th April 2014 in Latest Sport News
ONE of the last survivors of the Paolo Di Canio era at Swindon Town helped secured Mark Cooper’s side their sixth win in seven games to keep alive our faint play-off dream.
The goalscorer against Bradford on Monday, Lee Cox, joined Town from Inverness in February 2012, and since moving, Cox has only started five games due to injuries and lack of form.
In fact, the midfielder has played more games for local rivals Oxford on loan than his entire Swindon career, after he was cast aside at the County Ground last season.
With his contract ending this summer and not likely to be renewed, he’s certainly saved his most important contribution until last.
Another player who has almost certainly played his last game at the County Ground is Alex Pritchard.
Due to a clause in his loan agreement from Tottenham the young winger won’t play against Rotherham in 10 days’ time, but is free for selection this weekend.
Not since the loan signing of Danny Ward in 2010 has a player made such a big impact in a campaign.
Mark Cooper commented that Pritchard had “arrived a boy, and leaving a man”, it’s hard to disagree with that statement.
At the start of the season his ill-discipline was a problem, but as time went on his temperament and ability improved.
I predict the 20-year old winger will be voted Player of the Season – thanks largely to the occasions when he single-handedly won games for Town.
He has a big future ahead of him in the game, although I don’t think that will be at Spurs and I can see him lighting up the Championship next season.
After beating Championship-bound Brentford, Town maintained that form and enjoyed a successful Easter period.
Since being crushed by Wolves at home on March 11, Town have picked up 19 points from a possible 24, a superb run of results.
But these recent results and performances also make you question how, earlier in the year, the same team picked up just one win in 11 games?
One of the men responsible for our Easter wins was Raphael Rossi Branco. The centre back did a great job man marking Coventry’s Callum Wilson last Friday, and put in another dominate display on Monday.
Another player who has become vital for Town over the past few months has been Troy Archibald Henville, but being signed under Di Canio, he will be on a wage that is not sustainable for next season.
I hope that Lee Power and Troy’s agents can come to an agreement on a new contract, but his recent performances wouldn’t have gone unnoticed and I’m sure he’ll get quite a few offers from around League One.
This Saturday Swindon travel to Nottingham still hunting for a play-off spot and Notts County fighting for their League One status.
MORE SWINDON TOWN NEWS & REACTION IN THURSDAY'S GAZETTE & HERALD AND AT GAZETTEANDHERALD.CO.UK/SPORT