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A GOOD BASE TO WORK FROM

20 June 2014

Midfielder Sean McAllister has stressed the importance of a good pre-season ahead of the first game at Swindon Town.

He spoke in the aftermath of the 2014/15 fixture release.

Matches with Preston and Fleetwood on home turf follow that before a set of gruelling long distance trips to the likes of Yeovil, Bristol City and Gillingham.

And McAllister is hoping to get a good pre-season under his belt in order to claim a slot in the side on the opening day and isn’t daunted by the early away journeys in store.

He told Scunthorpe-United.co.uk: “Obviously everyone looks out for that first fixture and then it’s important to get a good pre-season under your belt and stay injury free.

“It’s the target for everyone to be in contention for that first game of the season and hopefully get the three points and get off to a good start, that’s what everyone aims for.

“We’ve got a few long away trips early on in the season but you’ve got to play everyone eventually so it doesn’t really matter.

“It ended up last year that all the long away trips were at the end of the season but now we’ve got most of them at the start.

“Any away game is tough but we had one of the best away records in the league last season so hopefully we can continue that form.”

The draw for the first round of the Capital One Cup has also been made this week and the Iron will line-up against Championship opposition in the form of Blackburn Rovers.

There are also a series of local derby matches for the squad to get their teeth into throughout the campaign with potentially the biggest pencilled in for the last game of the season away at Doncaster and McAllister is predicting a big atmosphere is each of the derby clashes that will be played.

“Blackburn are a big club with their history so it will be good to go there,” he continued.

“It’s not a ground that I’ve played at competitively before and it should be a good test for us.

“We played Barnsley last year who were a Championship side, we pushed them all the way to penalties and hopefully we can go one better this time around and come away with a victory.

“The Doncaster game on the last day of the season will be a massive fixture and if there’s anything riding on that then it will probably be one hell of an atmosphere.

“Then there’s the likes of Sheffield United, Barnsley, Bradford and Chesterfield as well so there should be good atmospheres at all of those game and I’m sure they’ll all be ones the fans can enjoy.”

Scunthorpe are one of four promoted teams to enter League One this season after accumulating 81 points last year as the Iron finished 2nd in the fourth tier, thanks to a string of impressive performances from McAllister.

The 26-year-old believes that keeping the core of the team intact going into next season is crucial and thinks the squad are capable of competing against the teams in their new division.

McAllister added: “I think we’ve got a very good base to work from and the fact we’ve managed to keep the core of the team from last year is vital.

“Everyone is familiar with each other and we had a really good team spirit last year.

“I think if you look at our record against the top sides in League Two last season, then it gives you the indication that we might not be far off doing well in League One because we seemed to get our better results against the better sides.

“Jennison (Myrie-Williams) has joined from Port Vale, we've brought in Neal Bishop, and I’m sure there will be a few more to come as well so it’s just about adding to the quality that we’ve already got.

“We’re back in for pre-season testing next week just to make sure everyone has looked after themselves and I think generally everyone does.

“After that we’ll be back in properly for pre-season training so everyone will just be trying to keep injury free and hopefully things will go well as we get nearer to that first game.”

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