Marcus Williams insists the Iron still have a job to do this season, but says the club are within touching distance of safety.The midweek point against Bradford means Scunthorpe go into Saturday’s game against Gillingham six points clear of the relegation zone, with two fixtures left to play.
“It’s very close and almost touching distance,” said Williams.
“We could lose and the other teams below us also lose and we’d still be safe. But we cannot let that happen. It’s our home turf and we want to win and secure safety.”
United enjoyed an emphatic 3-0 victory against Gillingham back in October, a match that was watched by Mark Robins, who took over three days later. However, the defender says Saturday’s clash against the Gills will be “completely different to when we played them at their place”.
He said: “Gillingham are safe and cannot reach the play-offs, so they could change their team drastically. We’ve still got a job to do so we’re preparing ourselves in the right way – training and recovering from Tuesday’s game. We go into the game knowing we want to win.”
Williams says there have been some “big changes” to the Iron since Mark Robins took over in October.
“The training has been intense and he’s brought in a lot of good players. Because the games have been coming thick and fast, we haven’t been able to train as much, so it’s been a case of getting to know the players on the pitch more than anything,” he said.
“We need to get the three points on Saturday, and then I’m sure the gaffer will strengthen again and look to push on next season,” he said. “We don’t want to be where we were this term.”
Despite the number of new arrivals in the side, the 29-year-old has managed to keep his place in the team throughout the campaign. He puts this down to hard work and commitment.
“There have been places for grabs all over the pitch. I’ve just had to knuckle down, work hard and give it my all. The gaffer has been happy with my and this season has been one of my best,” he said.
Williams says Scunthorpe have conceded too many goals this term and that half of them have come from “mistakes and sloppiness.”
He said: “You don’t win games if you don’t keep clean sheets. It’s been frustrating this season as, at times, it’s felt like we were going to concede no matter what. Clean sheets are the main platform to work from and are important in any team.”
If Mark Robins’ side avoid defeat against Gillingham on Saturday, they will guarantee their place in League One next season. This will mean there will be nothing but pride to play for in the derby clash against Doncaster; the final match of the season.
Williams said: “It’s a derby game so the fans will turn out and we want to put on a good performance. We need to do things right and be prepared mentally and physically. We can go above them in the league which is an added incentive, but the main thing is to get the job done on Saturday against Gillingham first.”
See much more from Marcus Williams, Luke Daniels and Ned Kelly on The Iron Player.