FORMER Swindon Town striker Sam Parkin believes his old club has enough quality to stay in League One, but it is likely to go down to the final day before safety is confirmed.

Parkin enjoyed three relegation-free seasons at the County Ground in the early years of the new millennium, scoring 73 goals in 142 appearances as Town missed out on promotion to the Championship via a heart-breaking penalty shoot-out loss against Brighton and Hove Albion.

But with the current team battling to retain their status as a third-tier outfit, the former fans favourite believes Swindon’s away form will be crucial to whether the club reaches its goal.

Asked whether Parkin believes Town can stay up, he said: “I think it’s going to be really difficult, and it will probably go down to the final day.

“If you look at the squad, I know supporters will say it’s not blessed with brilliant depth or brilliant quality, but I look at it in comparison to the teams around them, and I will still suggest they have enough to stay up.

“It looks like the home games are very difficult on the face of it. Aside from Ipswich maybe, it’s very difficult to see where the points are going to come.

“So ultimately, the season will probably be defined in those away games against the teams around them.”

Having recently become a dad to baby Sidney, Parkin admits he has still found time to watch Swindon over the course of a busy past year.

The 40-year-old waxed lyrical over Richie Wellens’ League Two-winning outfit and admitted he was taken a back by the drop off in performance this season.

Parkin is hopeful John Sheridan has stumbled upon a winning formula after two important wins before the extended break, and Town can go on a winning run that pushes them up into the middle of the pack.

He said: “I am surprised with what’s happened this season because watching on last year, I was so thrilled about how it was all going.

“I know there are contributing factors away from football, but it was really disappointing to see that side broken up and to see Richie Wellens leave.

“You’d never have envisaged this – not a fall from grace because nothing is sorted yet – but this season being such a struggle.

“I anticipated Swindon, Plymouth and Crewe all having comfortable seasons. If I was a betting man, I would have said Swindon would have finished the highest of those, so the way this season has panned out has taken me by surprise.”