clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Roker Report’s Score Predictions: Swindon Town v Sunderland

Find out if our panel think Sunderland will continue their unbeaten start to the season or if they think newly promoted Swindon Town will take maximum points at the County Ground! Let us know your prediction!

Swindon Town v AFC Wimbledon - Sky Bet League One Photo by Chloe Knott - Danehouse/Getty Images

They It’s as we were in our table after the EFL Trophy stab in the dark. One point all round after everyone predicted a Sunderland victory and no maximum points due to a crazy expectation we would keep a clean sheet against Carlisle United... at home.

So back to the serious business of League One football and a trip to newly promoted Swindon Town. Will our panel be optimistic and predict three points for Sunderland after we score a bucket full of goals? Let’s find out in this week’s predictions...

Philip Butler predicts...

Score Prediction: Swindon Town 0 - 2 Sunderland

Sunderland’s first goalscorer: Aiden O’Brien

Sunderland looked improved in attack during the first half at Charlton - despite leaving The Valley goalless.

Swindon are clearly a notch down in terms of quality when compared with recent opponents, and for that reason it's difficult to predict anything other than a comfortable Sunderland victory.

Defence is a clear strength of Phil Parkinson’s and I’m backing the strikers to do the business by grabbing a couple of goals to make up for their misses in the last league game.

Charlton Athletic v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One
Aiden O’Brien
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images

Malcolm Dugdale predicts...

Score Prediction: Swindon Town 0 - 3 Sunderland

Sunderland’s first goalscorer: Chris Maguire

Swindon have lost their last three games in a row, two of these were at home and hardly against prime opponents. I’m therefore backing the lads can keep a clean sheet again and also get more than the statutory 1-2 goals we have seen so far. Although this does have a potential banana skin game feel to it, the type we have seen Sunderland slip up in so many times before.

I expect Burge between the sticks, but the central back 3 is less predictable. Hopefully Willis and Wright will both be fit to resume their partnership, but with Flanagan serving a suspension, and Feeney and Xhemajli both injured, the third name at the back is hard to call. I’d give Luke another go over young Taylor, as the latter needs a loan spell for me to build up his readiness for the League. Connor McLaughlin may also be considered or Parky may well switch to a back four, who knows.

I fully expect Leadbitter to anchor the midfield in front of the defence, and I predict Diamond could replace O’Nien on the right, with Hume as usual on the left. Not sure who will fill the middle, it’s likely it will be Scowen or Power as Dobson struggles to find form.

‘King’ Chris sent a very clear message he is back in business vs Carlisle, and I hope Graham and Grigg get a go up front, if they are both fit to play. Graham will start to find the net at some point and will get double figures for me this season. If he can create a partnership with Grigg, we will be in a good place.

After conceding three against the Cumbrians, Parky will be desperate for a clean sheet and hopefully we aren’t so focused on that, that we don’t put Swindon to the sword, and at a canter.

Sunderland v Carlisle United: EFL Trophy
Chris Maguire
Photo by Robert Smith/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Matthew Foster predicts...

Score Prediction: Swindon Town 0 - 3 Sunderland

Sunderland’s first goalscorer: Aiden O’Brien

Despite big wins against Rochdale and Burton, Swindon have had a pretty poor start to the season.

With only two wins in their eight competitive matches so far, they’ve yet to register a clean sheet and have conceded nineteen goals in the process. So, if ever there was a time for our goal-shy strikers to start scoring, this is the game to do it.

It will be interesting to see who completes our back line against Swindon, with Flanagan suspended and his expected replacement Xhemajli sustaining an injury on international duty. Regardless of the replacement however, with Wright and Willis at the back I’m still confident we can keep the Robins quiet.

I feel like a broken record when saying we need to be more clinical in front of goal, but if we want out of this League the boys up top need to do the business and soon. Get that monkey off their back, and I have no doubt it will do their confidence the world of good.

I’m predicting an early goal from O’Brien at the County Ground, and watch as the floodgates open.

Sunderland v Carlisle : Pre-Season Friendly
Aiden O’Brien in action against Carlisle United during pre-season
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Jack Howe-Gingell predicts...

Score Prediction: Swindon Town 0 - 2 Sunderland

Sunderland’s first goalscorer: Danny Graham

These are the sorts of games we should be winning if we want to gun for automatic promotion.

No disrespect to Swindon, who did very well last season and seem have plenty of attacking intent, but they have lost six of their eight competitive fixtures.

I expect them to play with determination and a desire to get forward, but will likely be met with steely resistance in the form of our back line.

Like him or not, Tom Flanagan will be a miss in defence as he has arguably been our most consistent defender this season. Injuries to Feeney and Xhemajli further muddy the water, so if we will have a weak link, this could be it.

Our strikers need to step up. Once again it has been the story of our attacking midfielders such as Gooch and Maguire providing the goals, much as they have done for the last few seasons. Hopefully Danny Graham will finally put his good movement to use, and bag one or two.

Overall, Swindon will have a go at us. They’ll want to impress at home against one of the perceived big sides of this level, and provided we stand firm, I’d expect us to be up to the test and ultimately win comfortably.

Charlton Athletic v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One
Danny Graham
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images

Will Jones predicts...

Score Prediction: Swindon Town 1 - 2 Sunderland

Sunderland’s first goalscorer: Chris Maguire

Finally football is back. Here’s hoping that it is more positive on the pitch than off the pitch!

With a few defensive issues, I can see us being more fragile defensively and it could be a bit of a makeshift back three which is why I believe our run without conceding will go early on in the first half. We will however, be able to pull it back this time and learn from our mistakes from the Bristol Rovers game.

We need some more precision and composure up top. No goals from any strikers so far in the League is woeful and needs to change. I believe Saturday is the perfect game for one of them to kick on and convince Parky to keep them in.

It feels like the manager has a deal with them that “scorers stay on” and nobody seems to be able to keep to it hence all the chopping and changing.

Swindon have not started particularly well so far and have failed to impress in any of their games this season.

This is one of those games you expect us to dominate and it’s a matter of taking chances and winning in style. Unfortunately I don’t feel we have the confidence to do so and see us scraping through once again.

Sunderland v Carlisle United: EFL Trophy
Chris Maguire
Photo by Robert Smith/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Martin Wanless predicts...

Score Prediction: Swindon Town 1 - 3 Sunderland

Sunderland’s first goalscorer: Danny Graham

Ha’way ha’way ha’way me bonny lads!

All aboard the optimism bus. This is it. The game that really kickstarts our season and propels us on a championship-winning run. After easing back into League One action after a six-month hiatus, this is it, lads and lasses, this is it.

Or is it? Well, it’d be nice to think so, wouldn’t it? With only defenders called up for international duty our attackers will hopefully have been putting the hours in to search for their shooting boots, and Parky and co will have found the key to unlocking the goalscoring prowess the squad possesses.

The defenders on international duty, however, pose a bit of a selection problem this weekend – Arbi went down, Flanagan’s suspended after he took one for the team against Charlton, and Conor McLaughlin turned in a poor showing for Northern Ireland and was rated as the worst performer on the field. Added to this of course, Morgan Feeney, who undoubtedly would have been given his debut, is also out with a long term hamstring injury.

The shortage of defenders combined with our need for attacking spark would tempt me to play O’Nien in the unfamiliar central defence role he played against Carlisle. This would allow the more attack-minded Jack Diamond to play in O’Nien’s usual position of right wing-back.

Sunderland v Carlisle United: EFL Trophy
Denver Hume
Photo by Robert Smith/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

In midfield, it’s now a question of Grant Leadbitter plus one – that one I suspect will be skipper Max Power, while Maguire should come back into the team after injury.

Personally, I’d play Grigg up front with Graham – in short, Grigg is our most natural goalscorer and it’s criminal that we’ve not yet figured out how to get him scoring goals – however that’s another story. I doubt Parky will agree and suspect he’ll go with O’Brien or Gooch in a role behind Graham – although I’d like to see Scowen retain his place somewhere in the team.

Regardless, Diamond’s attacking presence and O’Nien playing an unfamiliar role at the back could mean goals at either end. Swindon have scored eight and conceded nine in five games, and I reckon this could be pretty open. 3-1 to us – Hume scoring late to seal it.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Roker Report Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Sunderland news from Roker Report