OLDHAM ATHLETIC 2, SWINDON TOWN 1
Oldham Athletic’s whirlwind start set up the victory against promotion-chasing Swindon Town which lifted Lee Johnson’s side into fifth place in Sky Bet League One.
Two goals in little over one minute early in the game from Mike Jones and Conor Wilkinson left the Robins far from chirping.
And despite Swindon staging a spirited second-half fightback, Latics held on for a notable victory which strengthened their own dreams of promotion.
The only dampener was a hamstring injury picked up by Wilkinson not long after scoring and which will keep him out for up to one month.
Latics could not have dreamed of a better start when, after 10 minutes, Wilkinson beat the offside trap and crossed for Jones to fire past keeper Wes Foderingham.
And Wilkinson was next on target as he dispossessed a defender before beating Foderingham from the edge of the box.
Wilkinson’s night ended after only 15 minutes as he was replaced by new signing Rhys Murphy who was making his home debut.
It almost got even better when Jonathan Forte thought he had added a third goal, but his header was ruled out for offside.
Swindon ended the opening period strongly when Rossi-Branco and Michael Smith both forced saves from Jake Kean.
Brian Wilson came close to making it 3-0 early in the second half when his 25-yard drive hit the stanchion behind the goal.
Swindon started to impose themselves on the game and on the hour they halved the deficit through Australian international Massimo Luongo who found the bottom corner of the net with a drive from 25 yards.
Latics almost restored a two-goal advantage when Carl Winchester was denied by Foderingham as they looked to put the game beyond the reach of the visitors.
Swindon had the lion’s share of possession and substitute John Swift ought to have equalised with 10 minutes left, but his goalbound header struck one of his own team mates much to the relief of Latics who were under the cosh.
In fairness Latics defended well and might even have scored a third goal on the break but Forte shot straight at Foderingham.