SWINDON Town head coach Ben Garner praised the contribution of his goalkeeping group after the club beat Forest Green Rovers 2-0 at the New Lawn on Saturday.

Man-of-the-match contender Lewis Ward enjoyed a sublime afternoon against the club that gave him his first league start, making a handful of excellent stops – including an added-time penalty save to help Town keep a clean sheet.

Harry McKirdy and Tyreece Simpson added second-half goals as Swindon showed what they can do without five international players in front of the Sky Sports cameras.

Asked about the outstanding performance from Ward, Garner praised goalkeeping coach Steve Mildenhall for the preparation work he does with his pair of shot-stoppers, and labelled the 43-year-old as one of the best coaches he’s ever worked.

Garner said: “It’s a group effort – the work that the front players do, the work that the midfield players do, it helps the defenders out.

“If we do get breached and the opposition finds a way through then both goalkeepers have been outstanding for us – Jojo in the games he’s played, and Lewis Ward in the two games he’s played.

“The way they work with Steve Mildenhall – he’s a top, top goalkeeping coach.

“He’s as good as I’ve worked with at any level, he does an incredible amount of work with them and that’s why they can come in and perform the way they do.”

Despite a thrilling victory – and one which maintains the club’s unbeaten league start away from home – Garner felt his side did not control the contest as well as they could have.

The Town boss did, however, say he though there were other aspects of his team’s game which helped to grind out the three points.

Garner said: “I don’t think we were as good with the ball as we were against Bristol Rovers, if I’m honest. I thought we had more control of the game last week.

“But I thought we showed real defensive resilience against Forest Green, tactically we were very clever with how we played and what we did. And considering we had five away, in terms of the team spirit and togetherness, that was a top, top performance.

“I had complete faith in the players – I suppose it’s different for me because I see them on a daily basis and I see what they do.

“I had no concerns that we could win the game if we performed as we can. All credit to the players because they all performed.”