Matt Sparrow believes Saturday’s pre-season victory over Gainsborough Trinity was another good workout for the team as they prepare ahead of the League One campaign.The Iron beat Gainsborough 2-1 at the Northolme, making it two wins from two in their pre-season fixture list so far.
First half goals from Paddy Madden and Deon Burton put Scunthorpe 2-0 up. Trinity pulled one back early in the second half through Paul Beesley, but the Iron held on for the victory.
“It was a good game. Another good workout for the players,” Sparrow told The Iron Player.
“Obviously two different halves. First half, the rain. Second half the sun came out and made it a lovely hot day.”
He continued: “First half we played a bit better, second half I think we gave away a bit too much.
“Obviously pre-season friendlies are difficult, especially Gainsborough, who are a good team to be honest. Second half they got a bit of joy, but it’s another game out the way and three weeks now until the start of the season.”
Gainsborough was the second of eight pre-season games for the Iron and Sparrow spoke about how important these fixtures are for the players as they prepare for the new season.
“We are still doing double sessions, the lads are putting a lot of work into training," he added.
"Trying not to pick up injuries in the game today, but it’s another step closer to the start of the season, which everyone’s aim is to get into the starting eleven.
“If players could choose having a lot of games in pre-season, they would do.
"It’s good to get training but I think the games are where you get your match fitness and sharpness.
"You could train all day long, but it’s completely different from when you get on the pitch and start to play football.”
The Iron have added three players to the squad over the summer and Sparrow believes the pre-season fixtures are where they really learn about the new players.
“You can tell a lot from training but even more so in games, what are their best assets and what their weaknesses are,” Sparrow said.
“We have signed three quality players and they’re three good additions to the squad.
“Obviously we are stepping up a league so we do need new faces and competition for places. League One is a good league and a tough league, but it is nothing to fear in my eyes.”
Sparrow said how excited he is for the new season and how important it is for Scunthorpe to get off to a good start.
He stated: “When it comes to Swindon away, it will be red hot and that’s where you get the adrenaline pumping and you want to win the game, you want to go there, put on a performance.
"That’s what it’s all about. Pre-season is just about getting fit, getting sharp and aiming for the first away game.
“I think it’s very important to get off to a good start. We are looking at the fixtures now and every game is massive so we do need to start well."
“We’ve got momentum from last season but it’s a new league, a new team. There are better teams, more quality, the opposition aren’t going to give us an easy time. It’s important for us to get a good start,” he concluded.
See much more from Matt Sparrow, Russ Wilcox and Andrew Boyce on The Iron Player.