Having played just 30 minutes of Swindon’s Johnstone Paint Trophy win over Torquay, vice captain Scott Cuthbert is concentrating on getting himself fit for a televised clash with Bristol Rovers on Monday night.
Despite starting slowly this term, the Robins have almost tasted the high of promotion to the Championship last time out and will do all they can to go one further this season. Givemefootball caught up with Scott after the JPT win over the Gulls…
Q: You must be delighted with Swindon’s progress into the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy quarter finals?
A: I think the tournament is a bit controversial, a few managers say they can do without it but it gives teams chances to get to Wembley and play in front of big crowds so we are delighted we managed to get through. We got a good win against Southampton, then we had a dodgy game against a League Two team who had nothing to lose but I thought the boys did really well.
Q: You came off after half an hour with an injury. What was the problem?
A: I have been unfortunate in the last three games because I have had three head knocks but that comes with being a centre half. I took one too many on Tuesday and thought it was best to come off because there is a very important league game for us on Monday so I don’t want to take any risks.
Q: How tough will that game on Monday against Bristol Rovers be?
A: It is going to be very tough. We have had a few bad results, the last two haven’t gone the way we were hoping but we outplayed teams like Southampton and Huddersfield, when they came to the County Ground, for large parts of the game and hopefully on Monday in front of the cameras we can get a positive result.
Q: And you have been quite inconsistent this season, how do you sum it up so far?
A: We lost a few players in the summer and had to bring a few in so the team changed a lot. After last year, people expected us to be up there challenging straight away and we took a while to find our feet. The last couple of results haven’t gone our way but that is going to happen through the season. The six games we went unbeaten gave us confidence that we can push up the table and match anyone in the league.
Q: You were viewed as a surprise package last season, do you think that helped you getting to the play off final?
A: Inside the dressing room we felt that, with the talent we had, we could be up there challenging but outside the club there were no expectations which was good for us because we went into games with no pressure. We were fortunate enough to pick up massive results which got us to Wembley and it was unfortunate we fell at the last hurdle.
Q: How difficult was the loss in the final to take?
A: It was my first big game in front of a massive crowd and you look back on it and it just flew by, there aren’t too many memories. I just remember sitting on the grass watching Millwall lift the trophy and that was hard to take but it gives you that bit more motivation for this year to be pushing to get into the top two.
Q: And the revelation of last season was Charlie Austin, who was plucked from obscurity and scored 19 games, just how good do you think he is?
A: He had to bide his time because he is just a young lad but when he came in he scored on his debut and never looked back. He has the potential to play at a higher level and hopefully that will be with Swindon because he has been massive for us. We wouldn’t have been at Wembley if he hadn’t scored that amount of goals and it was a shame he missed the chance when the ball bobbled at the end of the final because if there was anybody who deserved to score the goal to get us back into the game it was him.