SWINDON Town manager Phil Brown felt there was “lots to admire” about his youthful defence after they claimed a 1-0 win at home to Newport County in the Checkatrade Trophy tonight.

Michael Doughty’s second-half penalty was enough to decide proceedings as Town made it three points from a possible six in the group stage of the competition, having been beaten 4-0 at home by Chelsea U21s in their opening game last month.

Sid Nelson was the senior figure in the back-line at the age of 22, partnering 19-year-old fellow loanee Luke Woolfenden in the heart of defence.

Kyle Knoyle, 21, and 18-year-old Joe Romanski operated as the full-backs and Brown was impressed by at how well they acquitted themselves.

“I was delighted with the youth of the back four and keeping a clean sheet – there is a lot to admire,” said Brown.

“Sid Nelson is a totally different character to Joe Romanski and Luke Woolfenden. Kyle Knoyle is probably similar to Sid in his tenacity, whereas the other two lads are two years younger.

“Plying your trade at first-team level is a wonderful feeling – hats off to them for keeping a clean sheet.

“When you are a young lad with a lunatic manager on the touchline screaming blue murder telling them to get in position, they don’t actually know what you mean. They sense danger because the manager is shouting, but don’t actually know what he is getting uptight about.

“You want to try to play the game for them, that is something I will never, ever lose. As a person, I just think I have that enthusiastic way, and so does Neil McDonald (assistant) and so does Matt Taylor (player-coach).

“We can’t play anymore, Matt is lucky as he can, but I am delighted for the young lads.”

Although Town’s winning goal did not materialise until deep in the second half from the penalty spot, Brown felt his side overcame a good test of character to find a way to win.

“There were things to like about how we played,” said Brown. “We can be a lot better with the ball. I think the final third in the first half let us down a bit, we just looked a bit anxious at times with the final pass.

“In the second half, it was probably more of an uphill battle because the longer the game went on, the less we were playing forward.

“Then Michael Doughty came on and whipped the ball into Elijah Adebayo’s feet and he gets a half-turn and asks a question of the centre-half and we get a penalty and then see the game out.”