Barnsley v Scunthorpe United

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Football League Championship

Barnsley2 (1)Scunthorpe United0 (0)

Williams 45(og), Odejayi 65

Barnsley :
Muller, Kozluk, Foster, Souza, Werling, Campbell-Ryce (Devaney 89), Anderson de Silva (Togwell 69), Howard, McCann, Ferenczi (Christensen 75), Odejayi
Subs not used:
Colgan, Mostto

Scunthorpe United :
Murphy, Youga, Crosby, Butler, Williams, Sparrow, Goodwin, Baraclough (Iriekpen 81), Hurst, Hayes, Paterson (Forte 57)
Subs not used:
Lillis, Taylor, Cork


by Tim Baker at Oakwell

AS the clutch of hardy SULSESC veterans gathered in the Moulders Arms, the pre-match talk was of a historic moment.

Envisage the scene at Spotland in 10 years’ time with the Iron trailing 3-0 with FIVE minutes to go as a young supporter turns round and says: “Dad, is it true that Scunny were once fourth in the Championship?”

Each of us could turn and say, in the manner of Max Boyce (ok, he’s Welsh and plays with different shaped balls): “Yes, it’s true. I know ‘cos I was there.”

The talk was that, having retained fourth place for almost a fortnight, the Iron’s decline was inevitable and that we’d soon be reverting back, in traditional fashion, to a more comfortable position away from the dizzy heights and media spotlight.

The first 44 minutes, however, provided some encouragement that this view might be a little overly-negative. The Iron held their own against a limited Barnsley side and, backed by over 2,000 enthusiastic supporters, looked well placed for at least a point. Certainly they were little troubled by a Tykes side which looks likely to struggle again this term.

However, the pivotal moment came in the final minute of the half as a combination of poor officialdom and comic book defending gave the hosts an undeserved lead. An incorrectly given free-kick from inside the Barnsley half fell to Crosby, who leathered the clearance straight at Williams’ backside, from which it looped agonisingly over Murphy and into the back of the net. On such things do relegation issues often hinge come May.

Half-time hopes of a stirring comeback were soon extinguished as the Iron turned in a limp post-interval performance. In truth, they never looked like regaining level terms and once Odejayi charged through the centre of the defence midway through the half, it was game over. The remainder of the match drifted away in the late summer sunshine and the troops departed the pitch to the muted applause of the Iron faithful.

A very disappointing and slightly worrying outcome against opponents who United need to do better against if our emerging hopes of staying up are to become reality. There again we knew there’d be days like this and there will be plenty more defeats to come, particularly away from FGP, or Fortress Glanford Park as it’s now apparently known.

Still, shouldn’t detract from a decent start to the season – and it’s still much better than where I ever expected to be as an Iron fan!