United played out a 2-2 draw with Newport County at Rodney Park on Saturday in testing conditions.The hosts had failed to get several home fixtures on in the run up to the game with the recent bad weather and the pitch bore those scars. Sand and an uneven surface made things difficult for the Iron who went in at half time one down to a side attuned and adapted to playing the majority of their games on such a surface.
A bullish United performance in the second half saw them recover, assert themselves and take the lead, conceding a 91st minute equaliser under further heavy bombardment from Justin Edinburgh’s side.
Midfield terrier Sean McAllister spoke to The Iron Player post-match with his thoughts on an up and down ninety minutes.
“It was a tough game," he said.
"They’ve got an effective way of playing, particularly on a pitch like this so it was always going to be a difficult game. In the first half we weren’t really at the races and we probably got sucked into playing the way they wanted us to play.
“Second half, we came out and I thought we stamped our authority on the game and started playing the way we wanted to play. We got to two-one up and at the end of the game it was just a set piece which is what they play for. It was a bit unlike us, to concede from two set pieces, we don’t normally concede from them. Overall, probably a fair result.
“We got sucked into playing a bit too direct, it was a bit scrappy. A few more tired legs in the second half allowed us to get the ball down and play but it was definitely something we spoke about at half time; getting the ball down and passing it a bit more. Eddie (Nolan) and Marcus (Williams) linked up well for that first goal and we went down the right for the second goal. We’d stepped the tempo up a little which helped as well and got the lead but it wasn’t to be in the end.
“There aren’t too many teams that are as direct as that and lob the ball in your box as much as that, it’s rare now, so it’s a different challenge - a lot of it is trying to get on the second ball. Teams seem to be playing three and four in midfield which is something me and Dave (Syers) have become used to and I think in the second half when we did have the opportunity to try and play, we did that and benefited from it.”
Scunthorpe jumped a place to second in the league ladder following the day’s results, a position that McAllister is pleased to be in all things considered.
He said: "It gives us a gap to that fourth place and our target is top three and in the end to get promotion.
"Some people might have taken a point before the game but we went out aiming to get all three. It was probably a good point overall.
"We’re unbeaten again and in the run of eighteen games we’ve achieved two points a game. If we do that from now until the end of the season I’m sure we’ll be there come the end."
See much more from Sean McAllister, Russ Wilcox and Paddy Madden on The Iron Player.