IT would have been hard to re-write the script.

Latics have the worst home record in League Two, while Swindon Town were the joint best team on the road before kick-off.

The Robins arrived at Boundary Park having not lost a game on their travels - winning three on the spin - and that record never looked like being disturbed here.

Tyreece Simpson made certain of continuing Swindon’s impressive streak with his second half brace, but in truth Harry McKirdy had won it for the Robins just after the half-hour.

Carl Piergianni did score a 90th minute header from a corner to make it 2-1 and spark a bit of momentum when six minutes of stoppage time were indicated.

But Latics have only come back from behind to win once this season. In all other instances if they have not kept a clean sheet they have not won.

Even at 0-0 they looked flat, but having gone behind there looked to be no way back for a side lacking creative energy. The boos from the home fans - the most vociferous they had been from the usually more reserved main stand regulars - suggested they felt the same.

There has been precious little to celebrate at Boundary Park since supporters were allowed to return this season. Last season it seemed as though the empty stands were a factor in their poor home form, but it is a pattern that has continued even with bums on seats.

The 2021/22 home record now reads played eight, won one, lost six, and within it all only seven goals have been scored, which tells you a big part of the problem.

Latics have not created enough and have struggled to establish a tempo that can hurt visiting teams.

Injuries and illness - first Covid, now a bug - have put an already small squad at a distinct disadvantage. Head coach Keith Curle is continually having to dip in to the youth team to swell his squad on match days, and while they have acquitted themselves well, with Isaac Modi the latest to step up to make his senior debut after scoring the match-winning penalty in the FA Youth Cup comeback at Carlisle in midweek, it is a big responsibility and a big ask in a sink or swim scenario.

Latics are fortunate that all seem to have handled the pressure well so far. But with results like this that pressure is only going to intensify as the season progresses.

Hallowe’en weekend brought a horror of a first half. The only saving grace was that Swindon’s dominance was not reflected in the scoreline at the break.

Latics did have chances either side of the visitors scoring.

Jamie Bowden launched a long free kick into the box, Harrison McGahey was at full stretch to connect on the volley but he put it wide of the left post.

Jordan Clarke had twice denied Simpson - the second a goal-saving block but the breakthrough was inevitable and it came just after the half-hour when Ellis Iandolo crossed for McKirdy to volley past Jayson Leutwiler.

Latics limped towards the break.

They emerged with a bit more spirit in the second half. Hope being restored to his natural centre forward position made a difference, but service to the striker was at a premium and Swindon strengthened their grip on the game.

Simpson had a goal chalked off when the ball was deemed to have gone out of play in the build-up, but Latics’ let-off was short lived, as the teenage striker sublimely controlled a long ball into the box and stroked it past Leutwiler.

Piergianni scored his third of the season to reduce the deficit with a downwards header from Benny Couto’s corner.

But as Latics chased an equaliser in stoppage time they were caught out at the back and Simpson sealed the win for Swindon.