Swindon Town 3 Notts County 1

On Saturday, Swindon’s County Ground witnessed the sad spectacle of seeing one of the world’s oldest football clubs lose its league status after 131 uninterrupted years writes Peter Mitchell.

Notts County were one of the founding members of the Football League and their fall from grace demonstrates just how quickly a team can be cast into non-league oblivion.

All this despite finishing in last season’s play-offs, and also having probably the highest budget in League Two (rumoured to be £2.5m). As they still face a High Court winding-up petition, their troubles are far from settled yet.

County’s condition was close to terminal well before this final game, and Town’s part in their downfall was minimal.

For a brief period in the second half there was a semblance of hope. Jubilation amongst the massed County fans communicated the fact that Macclesfield Town were losing, before a converted penalty gave a glimmer of hope to the 2,500 travelling supporters.

It was all to be short-lived. In truth County had offered very little and, although Swindon weren’t at their best, the speed of their attack was a constant threat to the second worst defence in the Football League. In the final twenty minutes Swindon scored three times to complete an emphatic victory.

Kaiyne Woolery’s burst into the box and excellent finish started the rot, before two really clinical strikers’ goals by Theo Robinson.

Swindon fielded four loan players and it seems doubtful that any of them will be returning next season. They did give brief debuts to two promising youngsters, Cameron McGilp and Taylor Curran, both of whom are seen as “ones for the future”.

Apart from the relegation drama this is not a game that will live long in the memory, but it did also mark the end of Matt Taylor’s illustrious career, and it was good to see him get a final 15-minute appearance. Although he was only with us for two seasons he put in some super performances, always gave 100%, and scored some memorable goals from free-kicks.

There will be a huge turnover of players in the close season and we can only hope that Richie Wellens and his sidekicks conjure up a successful combination of new and old.