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Hurst reacts to 2-2 draw vs Crewe

25 January 2020

Manager Paul Hurst provided his reaction to iFollow Iron after an entertaining 2-2 home draw against promotion-chasing Crewe Alexandra.

Jacob Bedeau headed Scunthorpe in front with his first professional goal, but the away side hit back in the second period to go two in front. Nevertheless, United levelled through a spectacular Kevin van Veen effort and both sides had chances in the closing stages.

Hurst said: “I thought it was a good game, with two teams trying to pass the ball, and we did pass it well at times. There was some good football played and we had a little tactical change, playing some players in different positions, and I think they caused Crewe problems. It also allowed us to stop them getting into their rhythm.

“They reacted and changed their system so we were almost matched up, and both teams had spells in the game where they were on top. I’d have loved to have won the game of course, but I think everyone could see it was a good game and a good advert for League Two.

“My frustration as a manager is the goals that we conceded. We make life so difficult to win a game of football because we’re conceding too many goals and the clean sheets aren’t happening for us. Therefore, naturally it makes it harder to win games.

“I think we made it a lot more difficult than at Crewe in December (when United lost 3-1). We got ourselves in front and then had to show some character, through a fantastic goal again from Kev, to get something from the game.

“The change of shape we had allowed us to be better on the ball but also gave us a stronger base defensively and there weren’t as many holes for them to exploit. When a team changes for us, that’s a sign we’re on top, and I think after that both teams were on top in stages. They finished the game strongly, but over the course of 90 minutes no-one can say we didn’t deserve at least a point and we might have even nicked it.”

Talking about debutant Jordan Gabriel, who started at right-back, he continued: “I thought he started well and maybe tired a little bit towards the end, although you could see he was a good athlete.

“He put a couple of good challenges in and was an outlet, which he had to be because of how we lined up. You certainly hope he’ll only get better for us. He’s only trained once with the team, properly, with a full squad. I’m sure there were some nerves there but I only expect him to get better.”

Looking ahead to the away clash against Northampton Town on Tuesday night, he continued: “There will be a big contrast in terms of styles at Northampton on Tuesday. I watched their game (against Derby in the FA Cup) on Friday night and they’re on a real roll at home so it’s another difficult game we’re going into, but we’ll deal with that, think of a team over the weekend and be ready to go again on Monday.”

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