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Club News


29 July 2016

The Iron can confirm that the club has withdrawn from the Final Third Development League ahead of the 2016/17 season.

The division traditionally sees fringe first team players and a combination of youth team players face counterparts up and down the country.

Last season, as expected, a lot of focus was put on Sky Bet League One, leading to a number of the fixtures fulfilled entirely by our Academy side and towards the end of the campaign were fielding players as young as fifteen to make up the second string.

Towards the business end of the season, the obligation to fulfil fixtures also led to a number of trialists playing within the side and an inevitable fixture pile-up; an unneeded distraction from the First Team's exploits in League One.

A move to the new stadium in the near future will see the infrastructure of the club change to be able to do a development side justice, with the club remaining open to a return to the league in years to come.

The decision was made taking into consideration that friendly matches can be arranged as and when required to suit the needs of the football club.

Manager Graham Alexander explained the decision to not take part in the league: "At the moment we haven't got the facilities to fulfil the fixtures throughout the season.

"We think we can get higher quality bounce games to play on a regular basis at times and venues that fit in with our training programme. We will still have fixtures for players who need minutes and for the younger players so that we can continue to help their progression.

"We're not ruling out that we will return to the league in the future but at this time we felt that this was the appropriate step to make for the football club."

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