Alexan­der praise for su­per-sub Holmes

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Michael Hale

SCUN­THORPE man­ager Gra­ham Alexan­der called upon his side’s fringe play­ers to fol­low Duane Holmes’ ex­am­ple af­ter the winger came off the bench to earn a point at Rochdale.

Steven Davies’ header had put Dale in front but Holmes en­sured that the points would be shared with his sec­ond goal in as many games, much to the ap­proval of Alexan­der.

“He [Holmes] was disappointed that he wasn’t start­ing line-up which I can un­der­stand af­ter his per­for­mance when he came on the other night,” said Alexan­der.

“I said to Duane that he was putting pres­sure on me and he’s putting mas­sive pres­sure on the lads who are start­ing in front of him.

“That’s what we want from the other play­ers as well. I don’t want to pick the same 11 each week be­cause there’s no-one com­pet­ing.

“I thought we were a lit­tle bit hes­i­tant in our ac­tions and not re­ally at full throt­tle until we con­ceded. We need to try and start games like that.”

Iain Hen­der­son volleyed over from Joe Raf­ferty’s cross early on be­fore Josh Morris and Conor Townsend saw chances go amiss at the other end.

Niall Cana­van’s header came off the bar in the sec­ond half but Dale took the lead a minute later as Davies nod­ded in from Hen­der­son’s flick-on.

Davies nearly had a far more spec­tac­u­lar sec­ond goal five min­utes later but his curl­ing half-vol­ley was tipped over by an equally im­pres­sive Matt Gilks save.

Holmes came off the bench to bring Scun­thorpe back on terms just nine min­utes af­ter fall­ing be­hind, slot­ting un­der Josh Lil­lis af­ter Ha­keeb Ade­lakun’s ball into the box. Cana­van and Davies went close late on for Dale but Keith Hill ad­mit­ted that the re­sult was a fair one.

“We were play­ing against very good op­po­si­tion and there were some things about what we did I was re­ally happy with and one or two things that need brush­ing up,” said Hill.

“If I look at the squad of play­ers I’ve got, Har­ri­son McGa­hey and Joe Bun­ney are im­por­tant to what we do and they are miss­ing at the minute, so I’m rel­a­tively happy with this re­sult.

“I was happy with the press­ing in the first half but not the end prod­uct.

“Af­ter the break, I made a tac­ti­cal sub­sti­tu­tion but we were lack­ing on the press. We have to get the bal­ance right on that and we will.”

STAR MAN OL­LIE RATHBONE Rochdale

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