Scunthorpe 2 - 2 Forest
02/05/10 13:00 Category: Championship
Another away game without victory but, even with a reserve side, there were plenty of positives to take from the first half in particular. With most of the first team regulars missing, there were chances for some of the squad members to confirm their places on the bench for the play-offs to come.
After a slow start we soon found some form and should have scored more than that two we managed. Boyd found Garner on the edge of the area, to beat one defender and then thread an effort into the bottom corner. Just before half-time, a well worked build up down the right saw us move the ball across the area for Boyd to fire across the keeper and into the far corner. A fantastic team effort and it was comparable to Cohen’s goal at West Brom.
McGoldrick and McGugan both had good chances to extend the lead but we had to settle for a two goal advantage at half-time.
The hosts were much improved after the break and started to put some pressure on the Forest goal. After Anderson’s early volleyed chance we struggled to create too many chances. Boyd messed up two corners whilst a couple of crosses didn’t bounce favourably for us.
At the other end, Smith made a couple of smart low saves but we failed to clear one scramble which they took advantage of to make a game of it.
It looked like we’d survived the best that Scunthorpe could manage until McCleary carelessly lost the ball in midfield right at the end. Their player carried the ball forward and found the top corner from outside the area, leaving Smith with no chance.
In terms of those with something to prove, MOTM Joe Garner was the one who made the most of his chance. Finally playing as a centre forward, he caused problems throughout and scored a well-taken and deserved goal. Should find himself on the bench, especially if we’re battling away from home.
Alongside him, McGoldrick continues to frustrate, sometimes combining well with those around him but never looking like scoring and often giving the ball away cheaply from promising positions. On current form, Garner looks like the best option as a reserve striker but McGoldrick should still be on the bench.
McCleary’s pace and skill would be a great asset to have in reserve but the late error cost us the game and we couldn’t afford to risk a repeat in the coming weeks. He’s unlikely to be involved in the away leg and a small chance of being on the bench for the home game.
Boyd showed a few moments of promise and was certainly improved on his performance at Doncaster. However, compared to Anderson, we should still expect more from him in terms of work-rate. Too often he’s happy to let others take his share of tracking back and backs out of challenges. Would be a useful option to have on the bench and this goal itself should see him in front of McCleary.
McGugan missed a very good chance with only the keeper to beat but barely featured in the rest of the game. Could have won the game right at the end with a free kick narrowly wide but this has to go down as another wasted opportunity in a red shirt. If everyone’s fit, he could be struggling to be involved if McKenna makes a return and Moussi’s recent form continues.
Lynch didn’t look 100% fit in the opening stages but improved as the game progressed and didn’t let anyone down. Away from home he’d bring more height to the defence and allow Gunter back to the right but still unlikely to be involved in the coming weeks. Gunter and Chambers still remain as the best full back pairing on current form, especially with the latter’s ability to score from set pieces.
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