United defender Jordan Clarke believes that having no midweek game will benefit the squad as they prepare for Saturday’s game against Sheffield United.The Iron had played every Saturday and Tuesday back to back since February 7 up until Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Crewe Alexandra.
Clarke, who played in every one of those fixtures, says the rest before the weekend’s fixture at Glanford Park has given the side a good period of time to properly prepare for the visit of the Blades, who sit 5th in the League One table.
He said: “There have been a lot of games recently and it does take its toll on everyone’s body but we’re trained to do this and the club and the staff here look after us very well so there are no excuses on that side. We need to keep going but it is quite pleasing that we haven’t got a Tuesday game this week and now we’ve had the rest we are ready to go and get the points.”
“The feeling in the squad is good. We have had a decent session in training where we worked on a lot of stuff and all the lads and staff have had a laugh and a joke. We’ve done all the serious part as well so all the lads are feeling good and all the lads are looking forward to the weekend. It’s a completely different team and challenge so we have to prepare for that and I think in all the lads’ minds now it’s points before anything so if that means winning ugly then that means winning ugly.”
Last weekend’s defeat left the Iron in 17th position in the table as goals from Greg Leigh and Marcus Haber earned Crewe the victory.
23 year old Clarke played the full 90 minutes in the game to make it 12 straight appearances since he was signed from Coventry City in January.
The right back, who was on loan at Yeovil Town earlier in the season, gave his assessment on the weekends defeat and explained his confidence in why he feels the team can bounce back this Saturday.
He added: “I think the first half was quite even, however I think we had more chances. In the second half we were more spread out as a team and we knew we needed to score but that left us vulnerable at the back.
“They got two goals in quick succession, the first goal no one was going to stop because it was a great finish from the boy and for them to get the second one so quickly was a bit demoralising. I think we still tried to create chances and we still had some chances which could have scored from, and maybe should have scored from, but it just wasn’t to be on the day.”
“We can bounce back after every result. The game at Crewe away, and the conditions that we played under, it’s not something that we need to dwell on. We play Sheffield United next and it’ll be a completely different task. We need to work on what they’re good at and work on what we’re good at and focus on getting the result.”
Clarke has played every minute of every game since the 17th January and the defender stated that he feels his performances have drastically increased since his arrival into manager Mark Robins’ team.
He said: “When I first came here I was unfit and until my match fitness came back I was frustrated with my performances because I know what I can do and I know my performance levels can be way above what they were. I’ve been very happy with my performances since then and to be an ever present in the side is a really good feeling. All that aside, all I am focusing on is getting the results and the points. It’s all good playing but if we’re not getting the results then it doesn’t come to the forefront of my mind.”
Saturday’s fixture against Sheffield United will be Clarke’s 13th appearance for Scunthorpe United, if selected, and he will be hoping it will be a lucky 13 as the side look to get back to winning ways in front of the Iron supporters.