MARK Cooper is hopeful his Swindon Town players will believe they can make a serious impression on the top end of League One after beating one of the pre-season promotion favourites on Saturday.

Although Peterborough United came to the County Ground off the back of a wretched run of form they remain hotly tipped to challenge for elevation to the Championship this term and therefore Cooper thinks his team’s 2-1 win should inspire them to even greater things over the course of the remaining 22 games of the campaign.

Goals from Nile Ranger and Yaser Kasim secured all three points for the Robins, who are now within touching distance of a play-off place.

“In my talk before the game I wrote on the board the six teams in the top eight that had beaten us and I asked the players today that if we are going to be serious we have to start knocking off the teams at the top so we can catch them,” said Cooper. “That’s what today was all about.

“I think they’re happy that on a cold winter’s day they’ve ground a result out against one of the better teams in the division. Hopefully that gives them confidence and belief going forward.”

The victory was Cooper’s first as a manager over the club with whom he spent 13 unhappy games four years ago, but he did not see the win in any sort of revenge context.

“It means nothing, just three points,” he said.

“I don’t even get involved in all that. I don’t even go back to my time at Peterborough, it was that short and it was wrong for everybody. I just look now at going forward and it’s another three points.

“Nothing else matters to me – it’s three points that keeps us bang in the promotion race.”