United’s youth team ran out 4-2 winners over the league leaders Bradford City on Saturday morning.Inflicting only their second defeat of the season, the Iron consolidated second place, with the team reducing the deficit between them and their opponents to ten points.
Scunthorpe were also forced to play 30 minutes with ten men following the dismissal of defender Jake Hood for deliberate handball.
It was the Iron, who started brightly, took the lead after nine minutes of play. United won a corner on the left which was whipped in by Connor Purdue. Making his first start, fresh from his first substitute appearance last week, Charlie Cleminshaw grabbed his first goal, rising highest to head into the bottom right hand corner from eight yards out.
United could and perhaps should have had a penalty soon after, with Kyle Wootton breaking through and later being felled by the onrushing goalkeeper. The referee rejected claims for a penalty, instead opting to book the striker for diving.
It was 2-0 soon after though, with Wootton playing a prominent role from a free kick on 33 minutes. It was the target man who got on the end of the ball into the box, knocking it down for Noel Burdett, who slid the ball into the bottom left hand corner to double the hosts advantage.
The third goal wasn’t too far away either, arriving on 36 minutes. Arguably the pick of the bunch, it was a terrific solo goal from Reece Mosanya, who netted his first of the season. He picked the ball up on the left hand side, running with the ball to beat his man. From there he unleashed a shot from 25 yards out which flew across the goalkeeper and into the top left hand corner.
The second half saw a continuation of the Iron’s first half work and prominent display, with the fourth goal arriving on 58 minutes. More build-up play down the left this time involved Smythe, with the full back whipping his cross into the box to find Levi Sutton who sent a header in off the underside of the crossbar.
Two minutes later, Bradford had a lifeline with the ball heading goalwards. Jake Hood was the defender guilty of using his hand to stop the ball from entering the goal and albeit being pushed in the back, the only option for the referee was to award a penalty and dismiss the youngster.
Bradford netted the resultant penalty past Pat Weaver in the 61st minute to reduce the deficit to three goals, while it wouldn’t be until the 80th minute when the side was breached again – the Bantams making the scoreline 4-2.
Tony Daws was in attendance for the first half of proceedings before arriving at Glanford Park to oversee the First Team game against Burton Albion.
Paul Harsley said: “We’ve done really well of late, winning the last five games, so it was no surprise that we did so well against the league leaders.”
“It was a tough challenge for the lads and many of them have now played three games in a week, including the reserve game last week. We also have another midweek game this week.”
He added: “It’s about managing them through this period as we are down to limited numbers at this stage of the season, with a few players making their first starts.”
The youth team are next in action on Tuesday, March 25 when they take on Notts County at Gainsborough’s Northolme, kick off 2pm.
IRON: Weaver, Cleminshaw, Smythe, Purdue, Hare, Hood, Oliver-Stothard, Sutton, Wootton, Burdett, Mosanya.
SUBS: Kurtis Bedford (non-contract terms), Ledger, Dean-Atkinson.