GRAHAM: IRON MUST DO BETTER
GRAHAM Alexander toasted a “deserved” three points, but admits Scunthorpe United need to work on their game management after they edged out struggling Bury.
The Iron led 3-1 at the break on the back of some enterprising and entertaining attacking football.
But the final whistle signalled a sense of relief for Scunthorpe after the Shakers pulled a goal back midway through the second half.
“I thought we were excellent in the first half,” said boss Alexander, whose side moved back up to second in the table. “We passed the ball well, caused them problems and were solid at the back.
“But after being 3-1 up at halftime, we could have been more composed and seen the game out better, without me jumping up and down on the line.
“Bury have some good players and a lot of experience. They pushed bodies forward and put us under the cosh a little bit – as you can when the game is almost gone.
“If we’d have continued that first-half performance we’d have seen it out more comfortably, but we got the three points we deserved.”
Scunthorpe’s fast-paced start to the game ultimately won them the contest.
They went in front via a low drive from on-loan full-back Harry Toffolo in the eighth minute and made it 2-0 not long after when Stephen Dawson, a former Bury player, drilled the ball inside the far post after being sent clear by a delightful Kevin van Veen flick.
The Shakers got back in the game in the minutes before halftime via a deflected shot from George Miller, which wrong-footed Iron keeper Luke Daniels.
But crucially they could not get through to half-time without conceding for a third time – a controversial free-kick from Josh Morris that was first ruled out by a linesman’s flag amid suggestions of offside before then being given by referee Eddie Ilderton.
The strike meant a second-half goal from visiting substitute Kelvin Etuhu counted for nothing.
It also left a bitter taste in the mouth of Bury caretakerboss Chris Brass, whose side have now gone 16 league matches without a win.
He groaned: “The lads thought there was a touch, as the linesman did. When you watch it back it looks close and if that’s the case, it’s surely interference? “I’m perplexed again that we’ve had another decision go against us. “They cost you points and cost you results. “In the second half we had a right good go and did well, but that third goal killed us. “If we’d have made it 2-2, we’d have gone on and won it. “Something has got to change because it’s a professional game and livelihoods are at stake.”
TOFF OF THE CLASS: Harry Toffolo celebrates his opening goal
DUEL: Charlie Goode and James Vaughan compete
STAR MAN STEPHEN DAWSON Scunthorpe