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Match Reports

Report: Fleetwood Town 2-3 Iron

3 February 2018

Ivan Toney made his mark on his first league start since re-joining the club on loan in January, by scoring the winner that helped the Iron beat Fleetwood Town 3-2.

Josh Morris also scored a first-half brace, as United made a return to winning ways.

Graham Alexander made six changes to the starting XI that faced Southend last weekend. Conor Matt Gilks, Conor Townsend, Rory McArdle, Neal Bishop and Ivan Toney returned to the side, and Marnick Vermijl made his Iron debut.

It was an eventful start to the game as, within four minutes, there had already been two chances. However, it was the Iron that looked the more likely to score as they registered a shot on target. Toney cleared the ball into the path of Duane Holmes. He then found Josh Morris who tried his luck and was unlucky not to beat Chris Neal.

In the eighth minute, Neal Bishop did very well to connect with a bobbling ball outside the box. The midfielder hit it cleanly towards goal but it went straight into the hands of Neal.

The Iron onslaught continued, as Duane Holmes forced another fantastic save out of the Fleetwood ‘keeper in the 18th minute with a shot from the edge of the penalty box. His effort from the right-hand side had to be stopped by the diving fist of the ‘keeper to keep it out.

The Iron’s efforts paid off in the 26th minute, as Toney linked up fantastically with Duane Holmes to send him clear on the right wing. Holmes crossed the ball into Conor Townsend at the far corner of the penalty area, who headed it into the path of Morris at the back post. He hit it sweetly to beat the ‘keeper and bag his 10th goal of the season.

Ex-Iron striker Paddy Madden, who had already received an early warning from the referee, was shown a yellow card in the 30th minute for a collision with Rory McArdle.

New signing Vermijl showed his class in the 38th minute as his powerful long-range effort could only be parried by Chris Neal and forced a second save out of the ‘keeper to prevent someone tapping it home.

Holmes, who has looked threatening throughout the first-half, burst onto the left-wing in the 42nd minute. The winger crossed the ball to Toney in the box, who headed it towards goal. However, Ashley Eastham raised his hand to block the ball thereby giving away a penalty and receiving a red card in the process. Morris stepped up and scored from the penalty spot, finding the top right corner and his 11th goal of the season.

Minutes later, Fleetwood managed to find a way back into the game against the run of play. Ashley Hunter was played in, running into the penalty box and chose to shoot just inside it. He found the bottom right corner to reduce the deficit to one goal.

Morris had a last minute effort from outside the box but sent it just wide of the left post.

The Iron’s first chance of the second-half came as Duane Holmes sent a low, driven cross in towards the far side of the box. Morris was there to hit it but his effort was deflected wide.

The Iron had a few more efforts in the following ten minutes as, in the 59th minute, Tom Hopper turned towards goal on the edge of the box, shot and sent the ball just over the crossbar.

Another former Iron player, Bobby Grant tried for something special against his old team as he volleyed the ball at goal from the left post and almost got a deflection to take it into the net. However, it eventually went wide.

Not long afterwards, Grant got his goal as in the 67th minute as he tapped home a loose ball in the box following a cross from Ashley Hunter. That levelled the scores at 2-2.

However, the Iron fans didn’t have to wait too long for the winner, as Toney put away a free-kick from the edge of the box. The striker, who was making his first start for the Iron since re-joining on loan in January, picked out the top right corner from the set-piece that he won.

Lee Novak and Bishop nearly combined in the 87th minute to find the back of the net. The midfielder was found free in the box and headed the ball towards the back post. Novak dove to try and tap it into the goal but couldn’t quite get there in time.

United managed to see out the four added minutes and win a well-deserved three points.

Fleetwood Town: Neal, Coyle, O’Connor, Eastham, Pond (C), Dempsey, McAleny (Oliver, 44’), Diagouraga (Hiwula, 80’), Madden, Glendon (Grant, 32’), Hunter.
Unused substitutes: Cairns, Burns, Jones, Schwabl.

Scunthorpe United: Gilks, Townsend, Wallace, Ojo, Toney (Yates, 90+1’), Morris, Bishop, Hopper (Novak, 69’), Vermijl (Sutton, 82’), Holmes, McArdle (C).
Unused substitutes: Watson, Adelakun, Goode, McGeehan.

Attendance: 2,901.

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