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15:00 14th March 2015
By  Rhys Lloyd

The Iron bounced back from defeat in their last match to draw 1-1 with promotion chasing Sheffield United at Glanford Park.

Neal Bishop gave the Iron the lead on his return to the side, finishing off a well worked set piece routine from Mark Robins’ side.

The visitors hit back through Kieron Freeman and, despite an action packed second half, neither side could make any of their chances count to claim all three points.

Both sides came into the game on the back of disappointing defeats, with the Iron losing 2-0 at Crewe last weekend, meanwhile the Blades lost 2-1 at home to Fleetwood.

Mark Robins opted to shake his side up after the Crewe defeat, making three changes, with Andrew Boyce, Neal Bishop and Marcus Williams coming in for Alex Davey, Kevin van Veen and Conor Townsend.

Defender Williams had been missing with a back injury, but returned to fitness in time to face his former side, which he joined the Iron from.

Williams and his defensive colleagues had to be alert early on as Sheffield United tried to put the Iron under early pressure and return to winning ways after back-to-back defeats.

The Blades were looking particularly dangerous from wide areas and nearly profited from some Iron hesitancy, only for Luke Daniels to quickly read the danger and smother the ball.

The visitors continued to press forward and control most of the play, but only had half chances from Jamie Murphy and Ben Davies to show for their efforts.

Matty Done had a great chance to give them the lead halfway through the first half though, but he headed wide of the target when unmarked in the Iron box.

They had another great chance to take the lead shortly after, with a dangerous ball falling to John Brayford, although he could only stab it straight at Iron ‘keeper Daniels.

It was the Iron who struck first after 37 minutes, scoring from only their second shot of the game, with Neal Bishop on hand to head home from six yards out.

Niall Canavan headed the ball back across from George Evans’ free-kick on halfway and Bishop was unmarked to divert the ball past visiting ‘keeper Iain Turner.

The goal sparked the visitors into life again and it did not take them long to get back on level terms, with Kieron Freeman drilling home from the corner of the box on the stroke of half time.

A deep cross from Bob Harris went all the way across to the onrushing right back Freeman, who hit it first time and past the dive of Daniels in the Iron goal.

The came out brightly in the second half though and thought they had regained the lead just minutes after the restart as Turner fumbled a corner into his own net.

Gary McSheffrey put a dangerous corner into the near post area and Blades ‘keeper Turner spilt the ball, but the referee had seen a foul on the shot-stopper.

The Iron continued to push forward though, now playing a 4-3-3 system following the introduction of winger Hakeeb Adelakun, who replaced scorer Bishop.

Mark Robins’ side were unable to really test the visiting defence though and, as the half wore on, Sheffield United started to grow into the game again.

Iron ‘keeper Daniels was able to deal with what the Blades had to throw at him comfortably, with the shot-stopper easily able to gather the crosses into his box.

Both sides made changes as the game approached the final quarter, aiming to try to push on and claim all three points.

Strikers Kevin van Veen and Kyle Wootton both came on for the Iron as Mark Robins opted to play three strikers in an attempt to find a decisive goal.

It nearly paid instant dividends, although van Veen could only head Liam O’Neil’s free-kick wide from around ten yards out.

Paddy Madden then had two great chances to put the Iron ahead, but his first effort rolled just wide and his second was smothered by the visiting ‘keeper.

At the other end, Steven Davies had a chance to win it for the Blades, but his effort curled past the post, and Michael Doyle also drilled an effort wide.

Blades substitute Jason Holt had a great chance to win it late on, but he could only divert the ball over the bar from a Bob Harris cross.

The visitors continued their late flurry, although they were unable to test Iron ‘keeper Daniels, meaning that both sides had to settle for a point.

Scunthorpe United:
Daniels, Clarke, Boyce, Canavan, Williams, Bishop (Adelakun, 46), Evans (van Veen, 73), Osbourne, O'Neil, McSheffrey (Wootton, 77), Madden.
Substitutes not used: Anyon, Townsend, Davey, Llera.

Sheffield United: Turner, Harris, Brayford, Doyle, Murphy, Done, Coutts (Holt, 73) McEveley, Reed, Freeman (Alcock, 90), Davies.
Substitutes: Willis, Baxter, McNulty, Davies, Adams,.

Attendance: 5,550 (2,106 away).


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.