The Iron won their penultimate game of pre-season with a 1-0 victory at Northern Premier League side Frickley Athletic.Miles Addison made his debut for United, after completing a month-long loan move from Sky Bet Championship club Bournemouth.
A lot of the first-team squad were rested after a tough workout against Huddersfield and Matt Sparrow, Deon Burton and Andy Dawson were among the experienced players which travelled to South Elmsall for the club’s fifth pre-season friendly.
Burton grabbed the only goal of the game with a superb finish from the edge of the box and Frickley went close twice in each half, rounding the goalkeeper but failing to finish on both occasions.
The first chance came for the home side, as Brad Riley fizzed a low cross along the six-yard box and Addison was in there to clear.
Moments later Terry Hawkridge found space on the right-wing to send an early cross in for Burton, who tried to cushion the ball past Frickley stopper Ben Simpson, but his effort was sent over.
Sam Slocombe was absent from the match as a precaution and his debutant Pat Weaver was rounded by Ryan Williams seven minutes in. The Frickley forward was laid back in slotting it into an open net, instead toe-poking his shot against the crossbar, much to the relief of the travelling Scunthorpe fans.
Taron Hare and Hawkridge showed good early link-up play as Hare overlapped Hawridge on more than one occasion, crossing towards stand-in captain Burton.
Luke Hornsey, making a return to the club where he has previously been on loan, was set through by Curtis Bateson after ten minutes and stopper Simpson was quick out of the blocks to close down the young midfield man.
The Iron were appealing for a penalty shortly after 15 minutes after Dawson sent in a cross to Burton, who controlled with his chest and had his feet taken from him before he could fire a shot towards goal from eight yards.
The Iron’s biggest chance of the first-half fell to Hawkridge. A corner was cleared to the Iron midfielder on the edge of the box and he combined well with Sparrow before firing a low effort from 22 yards, forcing Simpson to dive and send it out for a corner, which came to no avail.
Gavin Allott also came close for the home side, as the referee’s half-time whistle neared. He found space in the box to blast a rising shot past Weaver and over the bar.
Ten minutes into the second period, Riley nearly put the hosts ahead as his run through the middle saw him shimmy past Weaver before his shot was blocked on the goal-line by United centre-back Callum Howe.
Burton’s goal came on the hour, when Bateson passed inside to ex-Derby forward, who turned and placed a finesse shot into the corner, out of Simpson’s reach.
Riley was the architect for Frickley’s next chance, as he found Allott and Weaver was quick off of his line to see the ball out for a corner.
Addison nearly got his first goal on his debut, from a set-piece. His aerial threat wasn’t the reason for his chance, though, as he volleyed wide to the left of Frickley’s goal.
Matty Knowles gave Weaver his first real test and the young keeper dealt with it well, punching it out wide for Dawson to clear.
Hawkridge rattled the bar twelve minutes from time, after substitute Kyle Wootton charged forward and found him in space on the left. The former Gainsborough midfielder cut inside and fizzed a strike across goal, ricocheting off the bar.
Another substitute, Levi Sutton, had his hands on his head three minutes later as a pull-back in the box saw him hit a great opportunity over the bar from 15 yards.
Frickley came twice in as many minutes, as Jack Wakefield found space on the right and pulled a shot across goal and then Matt Knowles sent a shot skimming over the bar from 18 yards and it was the final chance as Iron saw the win out.
The next match for Russ Wilcox’s men is on Saturday, as we host a Leicester XI.
Scunthorpe United: Weaver, Hare (Hood, 73), Howe, Addison (Hare, 83), Dawson, Hornsey (Sutton, 73), Sparrow, Hawkridge, Adelakun, Bateson, Burton (Wootton, 73)