Iron manager Graham Alexander felt his players rose to the challenge, particularly in the second-half, as they won 2-1 at Bradford City on Tuesday night.
The victory made it five in a row in League One and saw United climb up to third in the table.
Scunthorpe went behind to a Paul Taylor wonder strike late in the first-half, but Cameron Burgess levelled the scores just a minute later.
Hakeeb Adelakun then scored the winner on 69 minutes through a free-kick as Scunthorpe won a hard-fought battle in front of almost 500 away fans at the Northern Commercials Stadium.
After the game, Alexander provided his reaction to iFollow Iron.
ON THE CONNECTION BETWEEN PLAYERS AND FANS…
GA: We know what we’re up against here (at Bradford), it’s not just the team they have on the pitch but the team they have off it. We certainly showed what we’re about as a club. We’re maybe not as big as Bradford but we’re as passionate about our team and our football. The players showed that on the pitch and the fans did in the stands. It’s great to see. For me, the most rewarding thing is seeing the players interact with the fans at the end of a hard-fought game you’ve managed to win. That goodwill and connection is fantastic to see.
ON THE VICTORY…
GA: We were under no illusions about the challenge that we faced here tonight, and we certainly saw that in the first-half. After the first five or ten minutes, when I thought we were very good, we took a step back instead of a step forward. I wouldn’t say we let Bradford gain the momentum because they’re a good team and they earnt it, but we helped them as well with our general play. We went behind to a wonder goal from them, and it was a big goal for us with the equaliser so soon afterwards. It gave us a chance at half-time to regroup and sort out a couple of issues. In the second-half we were much better, we still had to withstand a lot of pressure but we competed at a very good level when we were allowed to, and I was delighted with the players’ response in the second-half.
"For me, the most rewarding thing is seeing the players interact with the players at the end of a hard-fought game you’ve managed to win. That goodwill and connection is fantastic to see."
ON THE EQUALISER FROM BURGESS…
GA: It’s another assist from Hakeeb, and a fantastic delivery into the danger area. We know Cam has that attribute of scoring goals. It was a big goal for us and gave us a shining light going into half-time. We grew in confidence after that, and we competed in the game at a much better level. We deserved the win through our doggedness and determination to have that chance of scoring the winner.
ON ADELAKUN’S WINNER…
GA: Haks won the free-kick he scored from and I’m delighted for him because he’s shown a much better maturity so far and hopefully both he and Duane Holmes are gradually getting consistent perfomances. I thought he and Duane were not at their dynamic best in the first-half to be fair. We gave the ball away too cheaply but we also didn’t make angles for each other as quick as we can do. In the second-half, we were much better at that and we know the quality Haks possesses. They were both a big threat for us in the attacking sense.
ON THE IRON’S RESOLVE…
GA: In the first-half I felt their front two dominated our backline positionally, and we let them dictate where the line was. In the second-half we were much better and were aggressive in our positioning and defending. It was a big open pitch and we condensed it better in the second period and made it tough for Bradford to play through us. When we had to, we brought on the three substitutes who added to that performance, and managed to not concede another goal in that half, which is a fantastic pat on the back for all the players involved. Gillo (Matt Gilks) pulled off a couple of fantastic saves in the second-half too. Whenever a ball came into the box, generally it was a Scunthorpe head on the end of it, and that first contact helps you win games.
ON LEE NOVAK COMING OFF IN THE FIRST-HALF…
GA: I think he twisted his ankle on the far side of the pitch challenging for the ball. He’s had a little bit of a loose ankle for a couple of weeks now and I think he’s hurt it. Hopefully it’s not too bad but he might be a doubt for Saturday’s game.
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