Iron have lessons to learn after late blow
DESCRIBED by visiting boss Wayne Burnett as ‘one of the favourites’ for promotion, Scunthorpe must learn from two vital lessons if they are to fulfil others’ expectations.
The Iron, according to their manager, Brian Laws, must be better at breaking down sides happy to contain them at Glanford Park.
They must also become more adept at seeing games out as Dagenham & Redbridge claimed a deserved equaliser in stoppage time – just minutes after the Iron looked to have won it.
“We have to learn from it because there are going to be sides who come here and pack the midfield,” said Laws.
“Dagenham had numbers behind the ball and while they allowed us to have possession, it was in areas where we couldn’t hurt them.
“We tried to stretch them in the second half and got the ball into the box from deeper areas, but then we didn’t do what we’d been doing in the first half.
“We put a lot of work in on set plays because Dagenham have conceded a lot of their goals from them. The one time we did it right, we scored but we didn’t do it enough.
“We had four minutes to see out, but we didn’t, we tried to play offside which was a really poor decision.”
The first half was a nonevent, with Scunthorpe zipping the ball from left to right and back again - without being able to get in behind the Daggers.
After the break, for all their dominance, the Iron almost fell behind twice in the space of 60 seconds, but keeper Sam Slocombe dived down to push away a shot from Brian Woodall and the woodwork denied Abu Ogogo from a corner.
Not to be outdone, Daggers stopper Chris Lewington kept the scores level when he guessed correctly to save substitute Chris Iwelumo’s tame 69th minute penalty, awarded after Femi Ilesanmi handled a cross into the box.
It was harsh on the visitors when the Iron went ahead two minutes from time when David Mirfin powered in a header from a corner.
But halfway through four minutes of stoppage time, Luke Murphy latched on to Woodall’s perfectlyweighted pass and rolled his shot home.
“Overall, I thought a draw was a fair result,” said Burnett.
“They had chances and we rode our luck a little bit, but Chris Lewington saved the penalty and I was really, really pleased with our performance.
“In the first half we were a little bit too deep at times, but we kept our shape well and we were comfortable, without really getting any possession ourselves.”