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STUCK TO OUR PRINCIPLES AND GOT OUR REWARDS

9 August 2016

United boss Graham Alexander was pleased with his side as he saw his side progress to round two of the EFL Cup, seeing off Notts County at Glanford Park.

A brace for Dutch striker Kevin van Veen set the Iron on their way to round two, but they needed extra time to see off their League Two opposition with a goal in both halves of the interval.

"These boys are fit enough to carry that out," he told The Iron PlayerHD.

"We would have loved to have done it in 90 minutes but Notts County proved to be the tough nut to crack that we expected. It was sometimes frustrating but I thought we played some really good football tonight.

"The lads stuck at it, stuck to our principles and continued to work hard and in extra time we got our rewards. It was a tough game for us and we knew Notts County would be very well organised."

Van Veen made it three goals for the season already and five in four including the final two pre-season matches with the former FC Oss striker showing his confident streak in front of goal.

"He's a goalscorer and the more he gets the better," he continued.

"He's done well tonight, he's worked a hard shift and we left him as a lone striker with two wide men in the second half and extra time, but he led the line really well .

"There were some fantastic performances out there tonight. I thought Stephen Dawson and Jamie Ness were excellent tonight."

A first clean sheet of the campaign was another positive to take from the game, with the Scunthorpe manager hailing the players for their defensive play.

"We pride ourselves on our defensive strengths and it's important to the players and staff," said Alexander.

"We had to throw our body in now and then and Notts County had their threats. Their front two were a handful and every player comes out with a pat on the back tonight as we're through to the next round and have played 120 minutes with a clean sheet."

Tom Hopper was named on the original teamsheet but was replaced in the starting line-up by Kyle Wootton, with Charlie Goode the seventh man on the bench. The Iron made three other changes to freshen up the team following Saturday's victory.

"Tom was already changed and ready to go out, but he got a bit of a virus," he continued.

"He tried to go out an warm-up but it wasn't to be. We brought Kyle into the team in his place and made other changes to keep the team fresh and to keep the energy levels up. I thought the three lads that came in did really well and they showed great fitness levels."

The United chief looked ahead to the round two draw but quickly concentrated on the side's next task in hand - Saturday's trip to Fleetwood Town.

"It would be great to get a big club at Glanford Park," he stated.

"For myself, the Chairman, the players and supporters, it would be great to be able to do that, but if we have to go away we will go away.

"We're happy to be in the next round. It's another game, but I think the players prefer to be playing games. I prefer to be playing games.

"We've got to park it now and make sure we concentrate on Saturday's game."

See much more from Graham Alexander, Murray Wallace and David Mirfin on The Iron PlayerHD.

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