SWINDON Town manager David Flitcroft says his side need to get to grips with playing in front of a home crowd if they are to mount a serious promotion push this season.

Their 1-0 defeat to Newport County was a fifth league loss at the Energy Check County Ground so far this season and has left the Town boss bewildered as to the difference between the club’s home and away form.

In a game which lacked any real clear-cut chances for both teams, Flitcroft’s troops were undone in the 75th minute as Ben Tozer headed home to give Newport a lead.

Matt Preston came closest to levelling the score for Town with a late header, which crashed against the crossbar, but other than that, neither goalkeeper Joe Day or Town’s Reice Charles Cook had a great deal of work to do.

After the defeat, Town are now eighth in League Two, a position propped up by superb away form.

The disparity in results is so great, that on home form alone, Swindon would lay 20th in the table whereas on their away form, they would be six points clear at the top of the league standings.

Speaking after the game, Flitcroft admitted there was a problem with Town’s home form which is stifling their season.

“It’s a defeat and when you add that to another defeat, we spoke to the players, with January looming, there is a disparity in the home form,” he said.

“It’s an individual responsibility to perform at home that we now need to focus on and make sure the players out there want to play at home and do it in a manner that I expect.

“I don’t think there is a barrier in the players’ minds, there is a disparity and I’m not going to ignore that and say it’s not there, because it is.

“After 20 games we are still assessing the squad and if we have to recruit or do something different then we will.”

The 43-year-old also said he expects many clubs will not only look forward to coming to the County Ground because of the facilities, but suggests their results may also provide encouragement for the visitors.

In Flitcroft’s mind it is another thing his squad need to overcome and he wants to counteract.

“My manager’s office isn’t far from the away dressing room and you can hear teams celebrate, because it is a big scalp coming to Swindon,” he added.

“The players have to stand up to it. We are a big team in League Two and a club with tradition so the players will have to embrace that.

“When I interviewed the players before signing them we talked about the responsibility, but up to now we haven’t done it as well as we have away from home.

“There seems to be a non-pressure away from home, they’re good players but they’re not making the right decisions at home.”