SWINDON Town Women manager Jamie Lloyd-Davies believes his side’s disappointment at a 3-1 defeat to Southampton Women on Sunday shows how far they have come as a group.

Despite taking the lead at Foundation Park through Helena Diaz-Butcher after half an hour, Town went in at the break all square as the visitors netted in the 44th minute.

Southampton went in front just before the hour mark as a strike hit the bar and went in while Town were finished off 12 minutes from the end following a slick passing move.

Though Lloyd-Davies’ team lost captain Polly New early on through injury and let a one-goal lead slip, the Swindon boss felt his side have come a long way since their 7-2 drubbing on the opening day.

Lloyd-Davies said: “Overall, for me it was positive. Coming away against a great opponent like that and feeling a little bit disappointed shows how far we’ve come as a group.

“If you look back to the first game, there was a five-goal difference whereas on Sunday, we’ve only lost by two and we’ve taken the lead.

“We had a game plan which definitely denied them chances and restricted them in terms of how they wanted to play.

“But to come away with a very respectable result shows what we’re starting to build here, though I am disappointed we haven’t managed to get a result.”

Following Sunday’s disappointing result, Swindon remain second bottom of the Women’s National League Division One South West on three points.

Not that Lloyd-Davies is taking much notice of the table for the time being – Town’s manager says his team will take the opportunity to use the second half of the term as their real campaign following an abrupt start to the 2019-20 season.

He said: “I think we can look back at the results from the first half of the season as our pre-season because our second game of the season was our first league game.

“Being thrown straight into a game is tough when you’ve not seen too much of the other teams, you’ve not been able to implement a philosophy, or you’ve not had time to develop the players’ fitness.

“So we’re looking at the Exeter City game on January 5 as the beginning of our season – we can walk away from both games with our heads held high and looking forward to the remaining fixtures.”