Football Kicks Off: Swindon back in the swing

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Swindon Town. . .2

Port Vale. . . . 0

SWINDON began life back in the First Division with a win yesterday but lived dangerously for long periods in the second half. Victory was ensured at the County Ground with 10 minutes left, the substitute Keith Scott scoring with his first touch of the ball having come on three minutes earlier.

Swindon, relegated from the Premiership last season, were the better side in the first half, with the Dutchman Luc Nijholt having a fine game in midfield.

Mark Robinson, their record pounds 600,000 buy from Newcastle, also showed some neat touches as did the Norwegian World Cup striker Jan Fjortoft. It was Fjortoft who broke the deadlock in the 22nd minute, swivelling to hit a superb close-range volley past Paul Musselwhite. His partner, Andy Mutch, however, missed a sitter.

Port Vale, just promoted, got their act together after the interval and Martin Foyle wasted their best chance, pulling his shot wide after racing clear.

Swindon: Digby; Robinson, Bodin, Whitbread, Nijholt, Taylor, Ling (O'Sullivan, 64), Fenwick, Fjortoft, Mutch (Scott, 77), Horlock. Substitute not used: Hammond (gk).

Port Vale: Musselwhite; Sandeman, Tankard, Porter, Griffiths, D. Glover, Kent, Van der Laan, Foyle, L. Glover, Jeffers (Walker, 82). Substitutes not used: Billing, Van Heusden (gk).

Referee: M Pierce (Portsmouth).