Northampton caretaker manager Jon Brady blamed individual mistakes after seeing his side’s winless run extended to 11 games with a 2-1 defeat at relegation rivals Swindon.
Ryan Watson gave the Cobblers the lead but Scott Twine’s free-kick and a 69th-minute Brett Pitman header saw Swindon come back to win and leave Northampton bottom of the table.
Brady said: “I thought we dominated the first half without being at our best and we got the goal to go one up.
“But we gave them strict instructions before the game to stay on their feet and not to give fouls away, particularly in the final third, because Twine is a very good technician and he can do what he did.
“We gave away a needless foul on the edge of the box and then I feel Mitch (Jonathan Mitchell) can do a lot better with it, in my opinion.
“Our problem at the moment is that we’re giving away individual errors in key moments.”
Northampton took the lead in the 26th minute when Watson’s drilled right-foot shot proved too hot to handle for debutant Swindon goalkeeper Archie Matthews.
Swindon hit back against the run of play on the stroke of half-time when Mitchell failed to keep out Twine’s 25-yard free-kick.
Mickel Miller’s volley 13 minutes into the second half forced a good save from the overworked Matthews as Northampton continued to be the dominant force.
But the visitors were hit with another sucker punch when Pitman put Swindon in front with 21 minutes remaining.
Matty Palmer fed Jordan Garrick down the right and his pinpoint cross was nodded beyond Mitchell by the unmarked Pitman.
Twine came close to a third in the 85th minute when his powerful curling effort was parried away by Mitchell.
Swindon assistant manager Tommy Wright said: “It was a six-pointer. They started both halves better than us but the goal just before half-time was vital.
“Every team needs that match-winner, that little bit of quality and it was a very important goal right on half-time.
“We are pleased because it was a vital game so to get the three points was a big plus.
“The best teams are athletic and have technical skill but they have the desire to keep going and you have to dig in.
“We are pleased with the attitude of the players. It’s been a tough time because the confidence was low when we were not winning games but hopefully this run gives us a little boost.
“We have some tough games to come but we just have to keep going.”