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Jimmy Dean: There were a lot of big performances out there

8 November 2023


Jimmy Dean: There were a lot of big performances out there

8 November 2023

First team manager Jimmy Dean reflected on a comprehensive away performance, which saw the Iron pick up maximum points on their travels for the first time since August.

Reflecting on the game as a whole, in which Jacob Butterfield and Connor Smith added more goal of the season contenders to the club’s archive, Dean said: “The game started really open in the first five minutes. They had a header at the back stick, which they could have done better with, and they had another chance at the other back stick which was blocked. In amongst those, we had five or six of our own chances.

“It started expansive, and we feel that when the game is like that and we’re on it, it’s going to favour us because of the ability that we’ve got in the side. I thought the football was pulsating in the first half, I thought it was on point, and it had to be. It was one and two touch in tight areas. It was a big pitch, and it gave us room to play. We knew they’d push their full-backs high, so we were looking to get in behind them, and I thought we did that on several occasions. 

“The two goals were worldies as well. We’ve probably scored the hard ones tonight and missed the easy ones.

“There were a lot of big performances out there. Our three overrun their four, and I think that’s the biggest compliment I can get - proper wingers when we got the ball, creating chances, getting chances themselves. The back four were solid as well.”

Jacob Butterfield continued what he’s best at, scoring long range efforts with either foot, with the Iron once again converting a direct free-kick, with he, Smith and Danny Whitehall all firmly in contention for those set-pieces having netted this season.

“I was calling for Connor,” Dean stated. 

“I watched him in training the other day, and I fancy him from there. Danny grabbed the ball, and I’d probably go Danny further out. There’s Jacob Butterfield as well, and even Michael Kelly is a great free-kick taker. We’ve got a lot of options, some real quality and class in the side. 

“Jacob Butterfield showed a real appetite tonight, coming away to a place like this, and I gave him a little nudge before the game saying if we’re going to win these games, and play the way we want, we need you on it. His reaction to that was unbelievable.”

United lost right-back Reagan Ogle to a suspected serious injury following an aerial challenge inside the first nine minutes. Coming on in his place was former Altrincham defender Ross Barrows, who acquitted himself well throughout the game.

“We think Reagan has got a fractured collarbone. Our thoughts are with him,” he continued.

“Ross Barrows, when he came on for Reags, looked like he’d played every game this season. I knew Ross from competing against him at King’s Lynn, a club local to me - the same as Mikey Clunan and Tyler Denton. I knew what a great player Ross is, and I think he will go on to show that now. He came in off the back of a bad injury last year, and it was always going to take time to get warm, but I think everyone can see what a good player he is. He’s going to really help us through this period.

“We got some minutes into Cal Roberts. We will all now see the difference between the match minutes and the training minutes, and we’ve got to keep building it. On the whole, a pitch perfect performance to be honest.”

Jason Law was also withdrawn after receiving treatment on the pitch, with the Iron gaffer giving an update on his potential injury.

“It was the one he caught the other week,” he said. 

“He caught it, and he came through it and then he played against Boston. We’d taken him off in the home game. Hopefully, it’s a bit of a precaution, because the boy has been doing really well.”

Scunthorpe now have a return of 10 points from the last 12 games, and are unbeaten in four. Dean feels as though his side are beginning to create some momentum, and is looking forward to upcoming games to continue that.

“New owners, and I’ve had four games back in the dugout since my operation,” he stated. 

“We’ve had two clean sheets, four points away from home, and I still say that’s a good point at Boston last week. They raised their game. 12 goals at home, one conceded. 10 points from 12 - I think we’re cooking.”

The final word, as always, went to the travelling support, with 215 making the circa six-hour round trip to get behind the lads.

“Unbelievable,” he added.

“I look over and it makes me smile - what we’ve got here behind us. I’d like them to know we appreciate it. They stand by us whether we win, lose or draw. They’ve been through an awful lot, and they keep turning up in their numbers. I hope they’re happy with the football that we’re serving the majority of the time, I hope they’re happy with the points we’re getting on the board now. 

“We’re all in this together - United we Stand, and hopefully we can continue that trend.”

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