Mansfield Town faced league defeat at One Call Stadium for only the second time this calendar year as the Stags were beaten 5-2 by Swindon Town.
Despite Mansfield being ahead twice, the Robins ran away with the match following Hiram Boateng’s 59th minute dismissal to move above the Stags in Sky Bet League Two.
Nigel Clough made five changes from the starting XI that drew 0-0 with Newport in midweek.
Kellan Gordon, Stephen McLaughlin, John Joe O’Toole, Stephen Quinn and Will Swan replaced Kieran Wallace, Anthony Hartigan, Ollie Clarke, Lucas Akins and the suspended James Perch.
With just 36 seconds on the clock, Kellan Gordon made a dream start on his return to the side as he netted against his former club to give Mansfield the lead.
Gordon was on hand at the back post to drive Stephen McLaughlin’s low cross past Sol Brynn in the Swindon net.
However, the Robins were back on terms just six minutes later.
Jacob Wakeling did well to beat his man and get a strike away which was parried by Christy Pym into the path of Jonny Williams to tap the ball into an empty net.
On 14 minutes, Will Swan was on the end of another pinpoint McLaughlin cross but could only prod his effort straight at the gloves of Brynn.
But 16 minutes later, the on-loan Nottingham Forest forward made his next chance count.
Following some tidy midfield play by George Lapslie, the former Charlton man was able to find Swan in behind the Robins’ backline who made no mistake one-on-one as he slotted the ball into the bottom left-hand corner.
Hiram Boateng received the first yellow card of the match for a mistimed challenge on Saidou Khan in the middle of the park on 31 minutes.
With ten minutes of the first-half to play, Swindon came from behind for the second time as Williams found the net again.
After Remeao Hutton’s initial strike hit the post and deflected back into his path, the full-back was able to slide the ball across the box for Williams who struck past Pym.
On 38 minutes, George Maris was shown the game’s second yellow card for a late challenge on the lively Khan.
The Robins had a chance to take the lead five minutes from the break, but Pym was able to get behind Ronan Darcy’s effort and keep the score level.
One minute later, it was Stags’ turn to have a go at making it 3-2 as Gordon’s cross sailed dangerously across the box. Unfortunately, Swan could not direct goalward.
At half-time, boss Nigel Clough decided to make a change as George Maris was replaced by Anthony Hartigan in the engine room.
Three minutes into the second-half, Pym showed great awareness as he came off his line to clear the ball from the path of Luke Jephcott who looked set to get his strike away, one-on-one with the ‘keeper.
What followed was fine back-to-back chances for goal-scorers Swan and Gordon.
Lapslie and Swan almost repeated their first-half trick when the former flicked it into the frontman’s path, but Swan was unable to hit the target with a looping volley.
Gordon then went through down the right-hand side, however, the wing-back could only strike straight at Robins’ ‘keeper Sol Brynn.
The Stags were made to rue their missed chances when, on 51 minutes, Swindon took the lead for the first time.
Wakeling made his way into the box from the left-hand side and cut it across into Jephcott’s path who drove the ball home in front of the travelling supporters.
For the second time in as many matches, Mansfield were reduced to ten men on 59 minutes.
This time Hiram Boateng was shown a second yellow card after he blocked an attempted quick free-kick that the midfielder had given away in the Stags’ half.
Mansfield goalkeeper Pym also saw a yellow for protesting.
Both teams made simultaneous substitutions as the game approached the 70-minute mark with Swindon looking to hold onto their lead whilst Mansfield searched for an equaliser.
Ollie Clarke replaced Stephen Quinn for the amber and blue with midfielder Khan being replaced by Louis Reed for the away side.
On 68 minutes, after a fantastic save from Pym following a strike from Wakeling, the ball was picked up by Darcy just outside the area who curled a well-hit effort into the top right-hand corner to make it 4-2.
Attacking midfielder Williams almost had a hat-trick as he struck from distance, however Pym was able to get down well and push the ball out for a corner.
With just over ten minutes to play, Jephcott almost doubled his tally as he struck wide, and was then booked for preventing the restart of play.
On 77 minutes, Clough made more changes as McLaughlin and Gordon were both replaced by Lucas Akins and Jordan Bowery.
Jason Law was then brought on to replace Lapslie minutes later.
Swindon responded with a double change of their own, taking off goal scorer Williams and Wakeling for Tyrese Shade and Morgan Roberts.
On 84 minutes, Swindon grabbed a fifth goal as Robins’ captain Ben Gladwin converted a penalty that had been given away by Pym for a foul on Jephcott.
It was almost 6-2 when second-half substitute Morgan Roberts headed off the bar.
Law and Bowery went close to consolation goals, however, both saw their attempts saved by Brynn.
Mansfield’s first home league loss this season leaves the side in ninth.
STAGS: Pym, Gordon (Bowery, 78), Hewitt, Hawkins, O’Toole, McLaughlin (Akins, 78), Maris (Hartigan HT), Boateng, Quinn (Clarke, 67), Lapslie (Law, 81), Swan
UNUSED SUBS: Flinders, Wallace,
SWINDON TOWN: Brynn, Hutton, Iandolo, Clayton (Baudry 18), Gladwin, Williams (Shade, 82), Darcy, Jephcott, Khan (Reed, 67), Wakeling (Roberts, 82), Brennan
UNUSED SUBS: Brann, Aguiar, Lavinier
REFEREE: Carl Brook
ATTENDANCE: 6,804 (734 Swindon fans)