Alexander praise for super-sub Holmes
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