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Alexander delighted with first three points

19 August 2017

Manager Graham Alexander hailed the 1-0 success against Oxford United as a ‘fantastic win’.

Match Reports

Report: Iron 1-0 Oxford United

19 August 2017

Josh Morris scored a spectacular winner on 83 minutes to seal a hard-earned victory for Scunthorpe against the previous league leaders, and the boss provided his analysis to iFollow Iron after the encounter.

ON THE VICTORY…
GA: I’m delighted, it was a fantastic win for us. It gets us off the mark with three points to add to the two draws we’ve had so far, against a very good team who have won their previous two games. I’m delighted for the players and supporters for digging in, and it was a superb bit of quality that won us the game. If we continue to show that kind of mentality, we’ll be alright and we’ll win games.

ON THE CLEAN SHEET…
GA: We want to build on every positive we’ve got - a clean sheet and three points is that. We still need to be a bit more ruthless with the opportunities we get. We got into some great positions but, for me, the attitude and mentality of the players was on show today to really commit to an attacking game, try and score the winning goal and then defend as you should do to get the clean sheet. It was a tough match. Oxford had a good gameplan to soak up pressure and hit us on the counter-attack, but we defended really well. When Matt Gilks was needed, he made a couple of fantastic saves.

"I’m delighted for the players and supporters for digging in, and it was a superb bit of quality that won us the game."

Graham Alexander, manager

ON THE WINNING GOAL…
GA: It was good quality from the lads, from the counter-attack. We broke with good composure. Josh found the space to go at his full-back and hit a fantastic strike into the corner and worthy of winning the game. I’m delighted with Josh, the players and the supporters for sticking with us through to the end. I know what Josh can produce. I think he’s possibly been a victim of his own success and the standards he produced in the first four or five months (of last season). We look at his performances with a cool head when we analyse the game, and also at his physical contribution to the work ethic of the team, and it never drops. If people work their socks off for this club and team day-in, day-out then I will show them that loyalty. Everyone was delighted to win that game. Hopefully we can enjoy it and move on to the next one now.

ON MATT GILKS’ IMPORTANT SAVES…
GA: He’s a fantastic lad first and foremost. He’s really come in and lit the place up with his character and personality around the training ground, and in the changing room. When he goes out on the pitch he has a real cool, experienced head. I wouldn’t say he’s overworked at times but he keeps his focus ready for when he’s needed, and his quality is proven. We’re delighted with that clean sheet, because I think the players have deserved it - especially the back lads. I know they pride themselves on their defensive qualities and they always need a reward every now and then. There is lots of hard work ahead and we know we need to improve in certain areas, but I know the players will work extremely hard to do that.

ON LEVI SUTTON’S SECOND 90 MINUTES OF THE SEASON…
GA: I thought Levi was our best player in the first half and he continued that in the second. His one-on-one defending was fantastic, and some of his passing ideas were absolutely spot-on and exactly what we were looking for. He stuck to his task well against some good opponents, who move the ball well and make clever runs. I’m delighted for Levi and he deserved to be part of a winning team. Everyone contributed though and it was a very good team performance.

ON KEVIN VAN VEEN’S INJURY AND TOM HOPPER’S IMPACT…
GA: I don’t know the situation, so we’ll wait until Monday for that, but Hops came on and showed his qualities again. He made it difficult for the Oxford defenders and linked closer to Paddy Madden. I thought - especially in the second half when they played as a partnership. They caused Oxford lots of problems. I was really pleased with the improved performance of the front two in the second-half when they interlinked and their movement was good. They broke up the Oxford back four on numerous occasions.

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