IRON GO OUT WITH A BANG
SCUNTHORPE produced a grandstand finish to topple promotion-chasing Swindon Town – but were still relegated from League One with manager Brian Laws admitting it has been coming for some time.
Goals from Michael Collins, Mark Duffy and Karl Hawley from the 88th minute onwards saw the Iron snatch victory from the jaws of defeat against the Robins.
But Colchester’s win at Carlisle still condemned them to a bottom four finish.
“We’re all disappointed because we did our part, which was to win the game,” said Laws.
“We had to rely heavily on Carlisle producing a performance to give us a glimmer of hope and unfortunately the great escape wasn’t to be.
“We gave it a right go, so we’ve still got some self-pride. I wanted the supporters to see that in the last of the season. “It’s not about what we should have done in this match and what Carlisle could have done for us, it’s about what we should have done in the previous 45.
“It’s a shame because for the last two or three seasons the club has been suffering.
“It’s always been a fight every year – there’s no positivity – and eventually that catches you up. It’s caught us now.”
Scunthorpe flew out of the blocks at Glanford Park, but could not find the quality to match their industry.
Instead, they were grateful to goalkeeper Sam Slocombe for a series of stunning stops to keep things goalless, as well as a linesman’s flag, which ruled out Gary Roberts’ header for offside.
Having looked the likelier scorers all afternoon, the Robins took the lead in the 83rd minute when James Collins slid in to meet a right-wing cross.
But after a brief pitch invasion from the home crowd, the Iron quickly replied with Michael Collins’ powerful volley.
Five minutes into stoppage time Duffy converted from the penalty spot, after Robins keeper Wes Foderingham had brought down James Alabi.
And Hawley headed in at the near post to cap a Swindon capitulation – only for Scunthorpe’s joy to be short-lived.
Defeat does not affect Swindon’s place in the play-offs, but it does mean they will now face Brentford, rather than Yeovil, after finishing sixth.
“In the end you’ve got to beat two teams to get into the Championship. All four teams are good teams,” said Robins’ manager Kevin MacDonald.
“Brentford will probably be disappointed about finishing third, but we’re disappointed about sixth.
“For 90 out of the 98 minutes I thought we were the better side and in control. We should have wrapped the game up, we had enough experience on the pitch to run the clock down.
“But I’ve got to say well done to Scunthorpe for the way they approached the last ten minutes.”