Iron manager Russ Wilcox said Saturday’s 1-1 home draw against Northampton Town left him disappointed, while it also took the shine off the United’s 19 game unbeaten run.Defender Niall Canavan opened the scoring from close range just after the break before Zander Diamond equalised for the visitors 13 minutes later, despite being down to 10 men.
The result, which saw United close the gap on Chesterfield to one point following their surprise defeat at Accrington, saw United match the unbeaten league record of 19 games, which was first set by Nigel Adkins’ side during the 2006/07 promotion winning season.
Wilcox told The Iron Player: “It is difficult to be positive about the 19 games unbeaten run today.
“I think once I calm down a little and soak that in I will realise that it’s an outstanding achievement for the group of players that are so committed to the cause but they are disappointed following the result.
“We speak all the time about managing periods and doing the right things and we haven’t done that today.
“You watch the Football League Show every week, especially League Two, the amount of goals that are scored from set plays."
He added: “We scored our goal from one of our first corner and you are hoping that will be and should be enough to win the game.”
The Iron boss, who played for the Cobblers between 1986 and 1990, was quick to praise his opposition manager for the work he is doing as he looks to ensure Northampton avoid relegation.
Chris Wilder and Alan Knill have now led the Cobblers on a six game unbeaten run, however they are still firmly in the relegation zone.
The United boss told the media: “Northampton deserve a lot of credit."
“They are at the wrong end of the table and they continue to put in an excellent shift in for the manager week in week out,” he continued.
“We are disappointed, from our side of it, because we know it’s a game we should have won.
“Still with 20 minutes to go – against 10 men – we created a number of good opportunities but Northampton stuck two banks of four and the one up front."
Wilcox added: “They sat deep and made it really difficult for us.”
When an opposition team has a man sent off fans often expect the team with the man advantage to go on and take the initiative in the game, however, that situation can often make the game harder than expected – especially from set plays.
Following the dismissal of Northampton captain Ricky Ravenhill, the Cobblers looked to stretch United as much as they could as they went in search of an equaliser.
Wilcox believes, like the fans, that having a man advantage should make things easier on the pitch – however that goes completely out of the equation when it comes to defending set plays.
“It should be easier in open play because you have the extra man but when you are managing the periods, especially from set pieces the extra man doesn’t come into play,” the Iron manager explained.
“It doesn’t matter where you put the extra man in those set pieces.
“It was Diamond who scores and it was a good header from their point of view, but we if are disciplined and don’t keep giving free kicks away like that then we’ll win the game 1-0 and everyone goes home happy.”
See much more from Russ Wilcox, Andy Dawson and Etienne Esajas on The Iron Player.