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THE GAME HAD EVERYTHING

26 March 2017

Iron assistant manager Chris Lucketti was full of praise for the squad following Sunday’s 3-2 win against Bradford City.

Ivan Toney fired United into a third minute lead before quick fire goals from Kevin Toner and Alex Jones put the away side ahead, but a brilliantly taken acrobatic effort from Toney just after half-time and Matt Crooks’ header in the final ten minutes ensured all three points.

Contested in front of a lively crowd and live Sky television cameras, Lucketti was understandably delighted to see the side collect victory against a key promotion rival.

He told The Iron PlayerHD: “Any neutrals watching the game will have got value for money, that’s for sure.

“It had everything. Passion, commitment, chances for both sides and it was good to watch from the dugout, barring the last 10 minutes when it got a little tense.

“It was backs to the walls for those final 10 minutes but when needed, all our players did a shift.

“They put us under the cosh, we had to defend for our lives and they did that really well.

“We’ve worked the lads really hard this week on a number of aspects of our play which we needed to improve and I think it showed.”

Toney scored for the second and third time in Scunthorpe colours since arriving on temporary terms from Newcastle United, during an afternoon which saw the forward recalled to the starting X1.

Predictably pleased to see the loan man find the net, Lucketti was also quick to applaud Josh Morris, responsible for two assists during the afternoon, as well as match winner Crooks.

“The first goal was a set piece we’ve worked on and he’s pulled back nicely but still had a lot of work to do,” he continued.

“It was a great first touch and Ivan has put it in the top corner. His first goal was all about awareness and composure and his second was about knowing where the goal is and having the technique to finish it like he did.

“We’re delighted for Crooksy – he likes to score winning goals here at the moment.

“He’s got tremendous talent and ability and, as you can see, he’s a great athletic size and a real threat for us.

“It was another set piece, he’s got his head on it and we’ve won 3-2 so we’re delighted he’s got the winner and there’s certainly a lot more to his game.

“Josh has probably had one of his quieter matches today but still come up with two assists and what he’s doing for the team is tremendous.”

The win maintains United’s strong position in the League One play-off places, made all the more important by the fact it came against a Bradford side with their own Championship ambitions.

Keen to keep the momentum gained from the Bantams triumph going, Lucketti also issued an update on Charlie Goode, who was forced to leave proceedings early following a strong tackle.

The assistant boss continued: “It can be a risk, making so many changes to the team but the lads that came in today took their opportunity.

“We always ask the attacking players to come back and do their jobs. Paddy (Madden) came back and was heading balls away from goal in the final ten minutes, big Craig (Davies) came on and did a job for us, as did Ivan as well and their importance to the team is vital from a defensive point of view.

“You get success from a strong home record and we’ve certainly had that. That’s why we are where we are.

“We made our ground a fortress and have had a couple of blips lately but it’s nice to get back to two wins again.

“Charlie has been doing great behind the scenes. He’s still a young lad with a lot of football ahead of him and we were really disappointed that he had to come off with an ankle injury.

“It’s swollen, he’s got it wrapped up and it’s going to be full of ice for a few days but it’s too early to say how severe it is.”

See much more from Chris Lucketti and Ivan Toney on The Iron PlayerHD.

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