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REPORT: IRON 2-1 GILLINGHAM

25 April 2015

The Iron secured their status in Sky Bet League One as they beat Gillingham 2-1 at Glanford Park.

An eventful first half saw two goals scored in the opening 11 minutes, as well as the game being suspended due to a waterlogged pitch.

The hosts netted inside two minutes through Luke Norris, after a lively start, and Hakeeb Adelakun equalised less than ten minutes later.

Gary McSheffrey made it 2-1 when he finished neatly, shortly before play was suspended.

With the help of the club’s staff, play was allowed to continue, where the rest of the first period was quite unsettling. The second half remained goalless as the home side withstood pressure from Justin Edinburgh’s men and United saw out the three points, ensuring survival going into next week’s season finale at Doncaster.

Mark Robins made one change going into the season’s penultimate match, with John Lundstram coming in to replace Isaiah Osbourne, who went off with an injury in the draw with Bradford City in midweek.

Both sides paid respects beforehand, with a minute’s silence to remember those who sadly lost their lives in the Bradford Fire on the 30th anniversary.

A heavy downpour before kick-off meant it was a slippery surface at Glanford Park and it was the visitors who started quickest.

Cody McDonald was denied in the early moments as Luke Daniels made a good save, before Norris gave Gillingham an early lead. A cross came in from the left and Norris finished clinically, as his volley came off the post and into the bottom corner.

It was nearly two for Gillingham and McDonald on six minutes, but for a brilliant last-ditch block from Andrew Boyce.

United grew into the game and equalised after 11 minutes, as Adelakun continued his good form. The young winger picked up the ball on the right and bided his time with close touches before arrowing the ball into the top corner past Glenn Morris for his fifth goal of his campaign.

More heavy rainfall followed and United took advantage by doubling their tally. McSheffrey was put through on goal and he showed good composure to take it around the keeper and slot home.

As the pitch condition got worse, the referee had no option but to call a stoppage to play, with another inspection to take place.

After further deliberation, play resumed at 3.54pm, continuing from the 27-minute-mark. United restarted as the sharpest outfit as Adelakun and McSheffrey combined well, with the former nearly finding the net.

Adelakun continued to provide a dangerous outlet, this time his cross towards Madden was cleared.

A long 40-yard run by Madden showed that the ball was still holding up on the pitch, as the game failed to settle.

The home fans thought it was 3-1 just six minutes into the second period, when Adelakun used his pace well on the right and he slotted it past the ‘keeper and just past the post - but some fans thought it was in.

Daniels reacted well to parry an inswinging free-kick from deep as the hosts were put under a period of pressure.

McSheffrey was nearly through as Niall Canavan’s lofted ball found Theo Robinson, whose deft touch looked to put the Iron number 28 through, but for good defending.

Canavan soon headed wide from a set piece before Gills substitute Bradley Dack sent a shot past the post from distance.

Gillingham’s came closest to equalising five minutes from time, as Norris’ 25-yard free-kick was tipped over the bar by the well-placed Daniels.

Madden nearly made it three as Adelakun’s free-kick fell to him at the far-post and the Irishman pulled it wide as it fell quickly to his feet.

United saw out the advantage to secure League One safety .

TEAM LINE-UPS
Scunthorpe United:
Daniels, Clarke, Boyce, Canavan, Williams, Bishop, Lundstram, Adelakun, McSheffrey (Syers, 70), Madden, Robinson (van Veen, 66).
Substitutes: Anyon, Townsend, Llera, McAllister, Evans.

Gillingham: Morris, Egan, Ehmer, Legge (Hoyte, 70), Loft, Hessenthaler, McDonald, McGlashan (Marquis, 70), Muldoon (Dack, 57), Norris, Dickenson.
Substitutes: Nelson, Morris, Pritchard, Bell.

Attendance: 3,763 (348 away)

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