United boss Mark Robins says his side will be more than ready for their replay in the FA Cup at Chesterfield, which will take place next week.A tough contest against the Spireites saw the third round tie at Glanford Park finish 2-2, with the Iron scoring two in the first half and the visitors equalling that tally in the second.
Alex Davey, who recently extended his loan spell from Chelsea until the end of the season, opened the scoring with a fine finish, showing composure to control the ball on the end of the box before curling it into the top corner.
A defensive error before the interval saw Lyle Taylor put through on goal, and the Iron’s number 19 made no mistake, again showing composure to beat Chesterfield’s Tommy Lee.
A dominant second half from Paul Cook’s men saw them earn a worthy draw, but it was Paddy Madden who could have won it late on, with a splendid strike forcing ‘keeper Lee into a splendid save which was just as terrific.
“I am pleased to still be in the competition, we have a second bite of the cherry at their place next week,” Robins told The Iron Player.
“Alex’s goal was well-worked, we spoke about set plays and how we can make an impact with those, and we did that. We kept the ball alive, it fell to Alex and we know he has got a good touch and it was gratefully received.
“He’s got great technique and he showed that by hitting the target. We got our noses in front that way and then a ball has gone through and Lyle has worked hard for it. He has got his rewards because he worked so hard to get on the other side of the defender and he took his goal really well.
“I thought we might have stolen it at the end, absolutely. There was chances for us and them and we got into the penalty area, Paddy’s hit it and the goalkeeper has made a really good save after he struck it well.
“He showed great legs and desire to get himself in the penalty area and Lee has pulled off a great save. I was disappointed to concede the two but I am sure they were also disappointed to concede two in the first half.
“We said after the game that they did to us in the second half a similar thing to what we did against Bradford before Christmas. I have no complaints, you’d like to hold onto those leads but they are a really good side.”
Chesterfield pulled one back from the spot as Eoin Doyle sent Sam Slocombe the wrong way, but there was some uncertainty in the crowd over the awarded penalty when Gary Roberts was felled in the box.
“I don’t know about it (the penalty decision), it is difficult to see from where we are,” Robins said.
“We haven’t seen any replays, we don’t get the benefit of that and there wasn’t any debate amongst the players in the dressing room after so I suspect there wasn’t any doubt over it. The referee has given it and we cannot do anything about it, it has gone to a replay.”
Sam Slocombe was one of the Iron’s stand-out players as he made a string of stunning saves to deny the Spireites so often in the second period. Robins credited the stopper, as well as providing an update on Isaiah Osbourne, who missed the game due to illness, and David Mirfin who has not played first-team football this season due to injury.
“Sam was outstanding again, he made some really good saves and his distribution has generally been good,” he stated.
“Neal Bishop got a dead leg in the second half which slowed him down a little bit. His booking possibly meant he had to be a little more careful that he didn’t receive a second one .
“Having said that, we competed with them the best we could do and we know that sometimes it is not good enough. You sometimes get into a two-goal lead and you have to see the game out, but we just couldn’t manage that.
“I don’t know how long Isaiah will be. He is ill and he has to get over that before he will be available for us again and it is difficult to say about David Mirfin because he hasn’t played.
“With the Christmas period and break in fixtures, we have not had enough numbers to organise friendlies and it has probably stifled his recovery and return. He needs some games no doubt about it but whether we look to do something with him out on loan to get him some game time it is something we will look at.”
See much more from Mark Robins, Alex Davey and Lyle Taylor on The Iron Player.