The Iron bounced back from Saturday with an incredible team display that resulted in a 6-0 thrashing of promotion challengers Spennymoor.
Following Saturday’s disappointing 2-0 defeat on the road against Chester, the Iron were back under the lights of Glanford Park with the perfect chance to bounce back to winning ways in a top of the table clash against Spennymoor.
United manager Jimmy Dean made four changes to the side that was comfortably defeated on the Welsh border. For the Moors fixture, Ross Barrows, Jack Jenkins and Richie Bennett were all dropped to the bench and were replaced by the returning captain Michael Clunan, talented winger Jason Law and Heart of Midlothian loanee Connor Smith. In other news the injured Danny Elliot was forced to miss the encounter, as Danny Whitehall came into the team to take his place.
Veteran midfielder Jacob Butterfield kicked off got the game underway for United and the Iron’s intention of making amends for the weekends display was clear to see from off as they took an early lead in spectacular fashion.
On his return to the squad, Smith expertly chopped inside from the right flank before being taken out on the edge of the area to win a free-kick in what was a dangerous area. Smith stood over the resulting free-kick and in Butterfield-esque fashion struck the ball beautifully as it soared into the bottom right corner of Moors goalkeeper James Montgomery's net to make it 1-0.
The Iron’s confident start to proceedings continued when Smith doubled his account for both the game and for Scunthorpe as he further extended United’s lead with just eight minutes gone. This time it was the opposite winger, Jason Law, who turned creator on just his second start for the club since his summer arrival from Mansfield. Law drove inside once he was shown the door and exploited the Moors open defence with a pinpoint pass that found Smith who danced around his man delicately slotted the ball passed Montgomery.
The Moors were in search of an immediate route back into the game and it was almost found through talisman striker Glen Taylor who swivelled on the edge of the edge of the area, but released a tame effort that was calmly collected by Scunthorpe goalkeeper Ross Fitzsimons.
The visitors began to obtain a much-required foothold in an opening 20 minutes that had been dominated by the Iron. Numerous half chances were calved by Lewis Dickman’s side but proved to no avail as Fitzsimons was left relatively unphased by any of the efforts that had been sent toward his goal.
The Iron went close to further extending to their already impressive lead, as Smith was narrowly denied by Montgomery to prevent the Scottish loanee from securing his hat-trick after he’d unleashed a stunning long ranged strike that sent the former Gateshead goalkeeper scrambling to his left.
The away side would live to regret their missed chances that they’d been presented to get back into the fixture as United made it three with five minutes of first half action remaining. Left-back Tyler Denton added another pearl to his goalscoring collection when he whipped in a dangerous deep cross that flew past the backtracking Montgomery and into the top corner further fortifying the Iron’s advantage.
As the first half drew to a close, things went from bad to worse for the visiting Moors as former Boston United defender Ben Pollock was shown a straight red card by referee Harry Jones after he appeared to have headbutted Whitehall straight in front of the official.
As play resumed for the second period, the Moors were left with a mountain to climb with just ten men on the field and having been punished with three superb goals.
The Iron’s sensational first half performance looked to be being carried on well into the second as workhorse midfielder Kian Scales’ drive through countless bodies to release a long-ranged strike that stung the palms of Montgomery who did showed skill to steer the ball away from goal and the onrushing Whitehall.
Scunthorpe’s fourth goal was soon to follow as this time Scales’ run from deep within his own half bared fruit for the Iron. He finished off his run with a pass out wide to the waiting Law who with a combined mix of pace and trickery beat his man and released a superb low driven strike that nestled calmly in the bottom corner to increase the score line to 4-0.
Following the fourth both sides made double changes, but both had very different objectives, Ross Barrows and Jack Jenkins were introduced to the fray in order to try and see out the much-needed clean sheet. However, the opposition's attack-minded alterations left them exposed at the back which was further exploited by Butterfield who, after some fortuitous play to maintain the ball, released a magnificent goal of the season contender worth strike that dipped straight into the top corner increasing the score to 5-0.
With morale at an all-time high for United, the Moors showed intention to ruin their fun by scoring a consolation goal in front of the 114 travelling fans. The goal would have surely been found if not for Fitzsimons who on closer review tipped a thundering long ranged effort over the cross bar to what would later ensure his clean sheet.
Before the referee could put an end to proceedings Whitehall was able to get in on the goal scoring action for the first time in several games when he met a brilliantly executed deep cross from substitute Michael Kelly to in true poacher’s fashion tap the ball home into an empty goal and making it six goals for the Iron and seven goals for the striker’s personal campaign.
Jones’ whistle soon followed meaning that the Iron returned to winning ways under the lights in what was another rampant display by Jimmy Dean’s players. Also, the dominant scoreline signified the largest Scunthorpe win since March 2016, when they beat Swindon Town in front of the Glanford Park faithful.
IRON: Fitzsimons, Ogle, Evans (Barrows, 63), Boyce, Clunan (Jenkins, 63), Butterfield (Kelly, 67), Scales, Smith, Law, Denton, Whitehall.
IRON SUBS: Wilson, Bennett.