Swindon 1, Hartlepool 0
Victoria Park, Hartlepool
Saturday 5 August 2006
Attendance: 4,690 (340 Away Fans)
Swindon Town sit 7th in the League 2 table after a spectacular performance from goalkeeper Peter Brezovan, which gave Swindon a 1-0 win in their first game of the season.
The game started in favour of Hartlepool and within 2 minutes it looked as if the home side could take a early 1-0 lead. Hartlepool striker Joel Porter was awarded a penalty thanks to a Ricky Shakes foul. New keeper Peter Brezovan made a fantastic save and then did it once more as Porter followed up with a shot after the deflected penalty save. Town were safe after Andy Monkhouse cleared the ball.
The game went back and forward with the home team enjoying most of the posession early on.
Towns midfielders looked a bit shaky but did chase the ball down, something that did not happen last season. In the eleventh minute a Michael Pook cross to Lee Peacock, found Peacocks head and was put passed Pools keeper, Konstantopoulos.
On the 22nd minute Brezovan made another fantastic save stopping another shot by Porter who had failed to convert the penalty earlier. Hartlepool then appeared to up their game knowing that if they wanted to get something on this day, they would have to find something special to beat Brezovan. The Swindon fans were chating Peters name and were singing their hearts out the whole game.
Pools almost managed to equalise just before half time, Humphreys found Nelson with a volley, only to be saved once again by the Slovakian import.
Both teams came back on the pitch unchanged after the half time interval and Hartlepool put on a nice display of attacking football, only to be met by the sturdy Swindon defence who have shown much more promise and reliability than last season.
Swindon Town manager, Dennis Wise made his first substitution on 49 minutes. Curtis Weston who was rumoured to slightly tweak his groin was replaced by former Nottingham Forest man Paul Evans.
ost of the possession continued to be with Hartlepool who was on the attack. A nail biting four minutes for Swindon fans occurred around the 70th minute mark. Hartlepool managed to hit the post, hit the cross bar and then were awarded another penalty.
Pools striker Ritchie Humphreys accepted the challenge of facing Brezovan only to be denied again. Swindon fans were celebrating in the stands, singing "We are going up" and showing the debutant Brezovan how much they appreciated his efforts. Brezovan had 2 saved penalties and looked invincible in goal.
Swindon Town ended up winning 1-0. But in reality Hartlepool should have won 5-1 atleast. If it wasn't for Brezovan, Swindon fans would have been made to suffer another long journey back from Hartlepool empty handed.
As the game ended the Swindon fans roared in approval singing, "We are going up" and "Up the football league we go", a great afternoon for Swindon fans and an exciting and entertaining football match for both sides.
In a show of good sportsmanship all of the Hartlepool players went and shook the hand of Brezovan, followed by a standing ovation from the Swindon faithful.
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