BACK in the first game of the season, Swindon Town required a Michael Doughty hat-trick to pull off a dramatic comeback to claim all three points against newly-promoted Macclesfield Town at the Energy Check County Ground.

While many supporters were left bewildered by parts of that performance, there was unanimous acceptance that Town were willing to play until the final whistle.

A 3-2 win against Tranmere Rovers at home offered further evidence that Phil Brown had built a side with plenty of character and nous over the summer.

Some fans were naturally concerned by the club’s soft spot in defence, as they continued to ship goals.

Yet with that problem now remedied, attention must turn to the opposite end of the field.

Swindon now seem to struggle to score, but has that always been the case?

Midfielder Doughty is the top marksman for the season so far, the majority of his six goals coming from the penalty spot.

Town have notched 17 times in the league so far this term, with 10 coming from open play as Doughty’s penalties and Matt Taylor’s free-kicks complete the tally.

Of those strikes directly from open play, Swindon have only managed four at home this season, three coming in their win over Tranmere, while the other secured a 1-1 draw with MK Dons.

This suggests that their lack of potency at home isn’t anything new, and that certainly proved to be the case as they turned in a determined, but ultimately disappointing display to draw 1-1 with Northampton Town at home.

Brown opted to make two changes for the game, Kyle Knoyle returning to his regular berth at right back, while Jermaine McGlashan was also reinstalled to the side.

Defender Luke Woolfenden retained his place despite being substituted at Crewe Alexandra, although that may be down to fellow loanee Sid Nelson being ruled out with a hip injury.

After not having much luck on Tuesday night, Swindon were almost handed a huge slice in the second minute of the game when Elijah Adebayo chased down the goalkeeper David Cornell.

The Town striker was hit with the visitors' clearance and his deflection almost bounced in the net before Cornell could gather.

Striker Marc Richards nearly handed Town a lead just a few minutes later, when he reacted quickest to Adebayo’s knock-down and improvised well to get an acrobatic effort on goal, only for Cornell to save.

James Dunne became the next player to miss a chance, and in truth, he should have scored. A superb whipped ball in from Taylor found McGlashan and the winger chested it down to Dunne only for the midfielder to fire straight at the away keeper from close range.

After such a frenetic start, the game settled until Richards had another opportunity to break the deadlock.

McGlashan delivered a good ball in from the right, before a superb touch from Steven Alzate found Richards behind him, only for the striker to see his effort saved with 20 minutes on the clock.

Sam Hoskins nearly got the game’s opening goal when he left Taylor in his wake to bear down on goal. Thankfully for Town McCormick stood tall and denied.

Despite the early excitement, neither team seemed to assert their authority on proceedings on a damp day at the Energy Check County Ground.

Taylor hit a speculative shot towards goal in the dying moments of the first half, which flew high and wide, somewhat summing up the first instalment.

Five minutes after the restart, Richards had a decent opening has Dunne side footed the ball over the Northampton defence.

Richards, who was playing against his former side, opted to shoot first time and managed to clear the Town End with his effort.

On the hour mark, Keith Curle, who was appointed as Northampton manager at the start of the month, elected to bring Kevin Van Veen onto the game.

Moments later former Town man Andy Williams drew a good save out of McCormick, before the ball deflected out for a corner.

From the resulting corner, John-Joe O’Toole was on target for the Cobblers as he lashed a volley home to hand his side the lead.

Brown responded with two changes of his own as Scott Twine and Keshi Anderson were introduced in the place of McGlashan and Richards.

The tactical change certainly upped the pace of the game from Swindon’s perspective, with Twine and Alzate both getting the ball in good areas.

However, as has been the case recently, Brown’s troops were unable to convert them into anything telling as Northampton dug their heels in.

As the pressure mounted, the Cobblers buckled when Anderson was hauled down near the edge of the area, leaving Taylor to convert a trademark free-kick and equalise in the 72nd minute.

Swindon were unable to capitalise on the momentum that came with their leveller, Anderson continuing to be a nuisance to the Cobblers, but the hosts couldn’t quite find a way through.

Town fans were vocal in their disappointment with Town's latest home display, and even with four minutes of injury time, Swindon’s dramatic late comebacks looked like a thing of the past as they settle for a point.

They have little time to dither on their latest draw as they return to action on Tuesday night where they take on Plymouth Argyle in the Checkatrade Trophy.

Brown has hinted that the match could mean a first appearance for Kaiyne Woolery after he suffered a knee injury during the summer.

The 23-year-old showed bags of potential last season, but little end product, notching just four times in over 40 outings.

That said, the blistering speed and dribbling ability of the striker could prove invaluable and kick-start Town offensively.