Sheffield United 2 Swindon 0: Murphy at the double for Blades

Jamie Murphy celebrates his second goal.
Jamie Murphy celebrates his second goal.
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Jamie Murphy’s double saw Sheffield United beat League One leaders Swindon Town at Bramall Lane.

Nigel Clough opted for 10 changes from the side which pushed Tottenham all the way in the League Cup semi-finals.

That meant debuts for three new signings Paul Coutts, Kieran Wallace and John Brayford, the latter made captain.

Swindon started the game top of the league and had the early chances in a game which kicked off at 3.15pm due to problems in the ticket office.

Twice John Swift came close to opening the scoring for the visitors.

First the Town midfielder forced a good save from Ian Turner, before somehow contriving to miss the ball with the goal at his mercy.

Striker Michael Higdon was replaced by Jamie Murphy before half-time.

It was an entertaining contest, Swindon full of flowing football - if not a touch theatrical - while United were well-disciplined and Brayford had one thunderous run which deserved a better final product.

Che Adams was being closely marked by the visitors, but when he did get an opening, he picked out Murphy, only for the forward to be denied by goalkeeper Wes Foderingham.

United had been building up pressure in the second half and their deserved reward came with 17 minutes remaining.

Teenager Louis Reed broke down the right flank, and his cross picked out Murphy who drilled the ball home, taking the ball in his stride, to give Foderingham no chance this time.

Louis Thompson drilled a low shot wide of Turner’s left-hand post late on for Swindon.

The visitors had a good penalty shout denied at one end, before Murphy raced clear before chipping the ball over a stranded Foderingham to clinch victory in stoppage time.