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Swindon Town boss Mark Cooper: Job only half done

8 May 2015

Swindon Town manager Mark Cooper insisted Nathan Byrne's stoppage-time winner at Sheffield United will not change the way they approach the return leg of their Sky Bet League 1 Play-Off semi-final.

Byrne capped an impressive display for Cooper's side when he crashed home a low angled shot from outside the penalty area four minutes into stoppage time to make it 2-1.

Swindon, for whom Ben Gladwin saw his 27th-minute penalty saved by home goalkeeper Mark Howard, had fought back to equalise through Sam Ricketts' thumping header early in the second half after Kieron Freeman had given the Blades a deserved 19th-minute lead.

When asked if he would change his tactics following Byrne's late strike, Cooper said: "Not at all no. We'll play the same way.

"There's things we need to improve like not giving up possession as easily. We know it's only half-time."

Cooper, who picked out midfielder Yaser Kasim as his side's outstanding player, said he was proud of his players, who have given the Robins an good chance of atoning for three straight previous Play-Off failures, in 2004, 2010 and 2013.

"For 20 minutes we really struggled to get to grips with Sheffield United's intensity," Cooper added.

"They came out really strong and pressed and the crowd got behind them and we struggled to cope.

"But after that I thought we were outstanding. We played some brilliant football in a real pressure-cooker atmosphere and I'm really proud of the players.

"But it's only half a job done. We're pleased, but we know we've got work to do."

Follow The Sky Bet Football League Play-Offs on Twitter @football_league, on Facebook by searching The Football League and on Instagram @footballleague, using #PlayOffs.

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