SWINDON Town manager John Sheridan admitted his team deserved to be cut adrift in the bottom four of League One after a 2-1 defeat to Rochdale on Tuesday night.

In a game where Swindon were a distant second best, Rochdale opened the scoring after 17 minutes through Jimmy Keohane before adding a second – courtesy of Conor Grant – midway through the second half.

Substitute Jordon Garrick bundled home a late consolation for Swindon, but ultimately, defeat left Swindon four points from safety with five games to play.

Asked if the performance meant Town deserved to be cut adrift in the bottom four, Sheridan agreed before continuing: “And with the goals we keep conceding, yeah, without a doubt.

“We make things so difficult for ourselves as a team. Myself and my staff keep doing the same things week in, week out and we keep conceding so many poor goals.

“We’re always giving ourselves a mountain to climb, and tonight was a prime example of what we’ve been doing.

“It’s a massive opportunity missed in trying to gain ground on the teams above and move away from Rochdale.

“It’s the basics that we keep doing wrong. You can work all week on things, and you can show things, but once you go out on the pitch, if you’re making the wrong decisions and you’re not thinking about the game, about each other, you’re just not going to be successful in winning matches.”

The two goals Town did concede were littered with mistakes, in Sheridan’s view, and were made all the more frustrating by the simplicity of the potential remedies.

Keohane’s goal saw the Swindon defence allow the Rochdale wing-back far too much space to decide what he wanted to do while the second was a completely preventable counter-attack.

The Town boss repeated a message he has uttered so many times already this season – stating his players were not switched on.

He said: “It’s people not being switched on again, looking over your shoulder. It’s come from nothing and when we had men behind the ball.

“People weren’t pushing people on or getting touch tight, and we give him time and space to shoot. It’s only a case of someone looking over their shoulder to get a little bit closer to the man.

“We let the cross come in too easily, we had plenty of men back, but there are always three or four who are not switched on.

“And the second goal is absolutely comical – it’s from our throw-in near the corner flag.”