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21:46 25th October 2011


Town created plenty of chances and battled hard at Scunthorpe United this evening to come away with a point - with goalkeeper Ian Bennett pulling off two amazing penalty saves. All the same, they'll be disappointed not to have won the tie after conceding an equaliser in the 88th minute.

Lee Clark's men showed good character in a game full of chances, coming from behind in the first-half through an excellent Tommy Miller strike. 40 year-old 'Benno' then pulled off penalty saves either side of half-time before the in-form Jordan Rhodes netted an amazing 14th goal in just six games for Club and Country to put his side ahead with just four minutes left - only for the Terriers to be immediately pegged back by a Chris Dagnall strike in the closing moments. Nonetheless, the unbeaten League run now stretches to an amazing 40 matches.

Town's team (4-4-2):

Scunthorpe Team lineup

The Terriers kicked off in their home kit of blue and white stripes, with the rain pounding down on Glanford Park. However, a giant kick from home 'keeper Sam Slocombe setup the move for the first shot at goal inside the opening two minutes. Striker Chris Dagnall raced onto the ball before pulling it back to the edge of the area, but winger Andy Barcham sent his shot into orbit - drawing ironic cheers from the travelling supporters behind the goal.

With the downpour now subsiding, Town had their first effort at goal in the fifth minute. Jack Hunt was flattened by home midfielder Michael O'Connor 25 yards from goal, which allowed Gary Roberts to test his range at a free-kick to the right of goal - but much like Barcham's earlier effort there was too much elevation on the effort and the 'keeper wasn't troubled.

Town continued to press and Arfield's low cross was collected by Slocombe three minutes later after good build-up involving Alan Lee and Roberts down the left.

GOAL - However, Scunthorpe opened the scoring inside the 10th minute through a good long range strike by Oliver Norwood. The Manchester United youngster, on loan to the Iron, picked up the ball around 25 yards from goal after Damien Johnson had flattened Bobby Grant; with the referee giving a good advantage nobody closed the ball down, allowingNorwood to take aim and fire an impressive curler past Ian Bennett's right side.

Town fought back immediately, with Scott Arfield driving positively at the home defence and having a shot deflected narrowly wide by a defender as he approached the penalty area. Unfortunately for the Terriers, Scunthorpe defended the resulting Roberts corner well.

The in-form Jordan Rhodes soon had a shot blocked by a defender after being fed a pass inside the area by Miller.

Town were on the attack again in the 18th minute when Gary Roberts picked up a loose defensive header down the left wing. 'Robbo' looked up and crossed low towards the penalty spot and when the ball fell to Rhodes at the back post, he uncharacteristically missed the target - lofting a harmless lob way over the crossbar from 15 yards out.

Town's attacks were often being sparked by Alan Lee's excellent hold-up play - the experienced front man, making his 500th career appearance, was getting the better of youngster Duffy in the aerial battle - often being allowed into space alone to bring the ball down and find his teammates in space.

GOAL - Town equalised in the 25th minute after a period of sustained pressure, with Tommy Miller netting a spectacular first League goal for the Terriers in his 12th appearance. After playing a clever one-two with Gary Roberts in the left channel, Miller drove towards the heart of the Scunthorpe defence - realising he wasn't being closed down, he took aim and smashed the ball past the goalkeeper's despairing dive and into the top corner. Miller wasn't done there - he raced straight to the other end of the pitch to celebrate with the travelling Town fans!

Tommy Miller Scunthorpe 320

Town continued to control the game following the equaliser and went close to taking the lead in the 29th minute. Scott Arfield drifted infield from the right to start the move, driving at the defence once again before sliding the ball left for Alan Lee; the big striker's left-footed cross was perfect for Rhodes, but his deft header back across drifted just wide of the post.

Home winger Andy Barcham was drifting infield onto his favoured right foot at every opportunity and he caused Town problems again three minutes later. His determined dribbling caused panic in the Town defence, but in the end he dragged his shot well wide of the near post from the edge of the box.

Town's good work then looked to be undone in the 36th minute when Antony Kay conceded a penalty. Peter Clarke got underneath a throw-in from the right flank and when the ball bounced in the area, striker Chris Dagnall got hold of the ball - before Kay caught his legs with a slide tackle.

Dagnall picked himself up to take the spot-kick - but Town's new cult hero Ian Bennett did brilliantly, flinging himself low to his right to turn the ball away. Jack Hunt followed that work up with an important follow-up block before striker Bobby Grant eventually fired a snapshot over the bar - cuing an array of cheers from the fans behind the goal!

With Town defending, some superb individual play from Alan Lee then setup a great breakaway attack. Completely on his own, the target man held off three Scunthorpe players whilst waiting for support before sliding a perfect pass into the path of Arfield. Scott easily skipped past defender Reid before sending a superb low cross across the face of goal, but at full stretch Roberts could only turn the ball wide.

Naysmith then pulled off a great saving header at the back post to clear a cross from Dagnall after a great run down the Town right.

BOOKING - Shane Duffy was shown the first yellow card of the game in the final minute of the half for a tackle from behind on Lee on the halfway line.

Referee Mr. Ilderton blew his whistle soon after to draw an end to a frantic first half!


Scott Arfield Scunthorpe 320

Antony Kay was on hand in the opening moments of the second half to block a decent-looking long range shot from Dagnall as the normal frantic pace resumed following the restart.

Damien Johnson soon set Jordan Rhodes away over the halfway line with a good clearance and the Scottish under-21 international ran straight at the defence before sliding a pass left to strike partner Lee. Alan's side-footed shot from the angle tested the 'keeper, but Slocombe managed to push the ball to safety.

The lively Dagnall then got the better of Town skipper Clarke by the corner flag in the 50th minute, but when his low cross was dummied at the near post by Grant it totally deceived midfielder O'Connor - who missed the ball altogether on the edge of the box.

An attacking Town corner then looked to have given the Terriers the lead in the 54th minute - only for goalkeeper Slocombe to pull off two tremendous saves. Roberts played the ball into the box from the right and Rhodes' back post header looked to be in - only for the 'keeper to show great reactions and push the ball away. The ball fell back into the danger zone, but first Rhodes and then Kay were denied by the 'keeper and a superb last ditch block respectively.

A long free kick sent towards the Scunthorpe area by Kay was knocked down to Jordan Rhodes in the 61st minute, but after his shot was blocked Alan Lee volleyed over the crossbar - and the stand behind the goal.

BOOKING - Goalscorer Norwood was shown Scunthorpe's second yellow of the game in the 67th minute for another late challenge on Lee. Peter Clarke played the resulting free-kick into the area and Lee forced Slocombe into a save with a powerful header.

SUB - Town made their first substitution of the game in the same minute, with Roberts replaced down the left by Danny Ward.

Ward was immediately into the game, skipping past the full-back and sending a tremendous low cross towards the near post that Rhodes was inches away from turning home.

SUB - Scunthorpe made their first change in the 71st minute, with winger Mark Duffy replaced by Garry Thompson.

BOOKING - Gary Naysmith was shown Town's first yellow card of the game upon the restart for a late ankle tap on Thompson.

Town were immediately pegged back, conceding a second penalty of the game. The free-kick was played into the box and when Dagnall controlled and turned towards goal, a Town player apparently handballed the resulting shot.

BOOKING - Peter Clarke was the apparent culprit and was shown a yellow by the referee for the handball.

However, it was 'Benno to the rescue' once again! The 40 year-old custodian faced up to Michael O'Connor on this occasion and this time opted to dive left - turning away a powerful shot before drawing the plaudits from his teammates.

Town regrouped soon afterwards and launched their own attack, with Lee heading Ward's corner over the crossbar.

SUB - Lee Clark made his second substitution in the 78th minute, with Lee Novak replacing Alan Lee.

Rhodes headed another Ward set-piece wide of goal with 10 minutes remaining after good work from Hunt had won his side a free kick down the right.

GOAL - Town then took the lead for the first time in the game in the 86th minute, with a recycled corner giving Jordan Rhodes the chance to notch his 13th goal of the season. Danny Ward won a corner down the Town left that Scunthorpe dealt with in the first instance, but when Naysmith headed the ball back into the area Peter Clarke did enough to ensure the ball dropped to Rhodes - who absolutely smashed the ball past the helpless goalkeeper!

GOAL - However, with the Town fans celebrating the Iron hot back two minutes later through Chris Dagnall. A ball played forward by Scunthorpe slipped underneath Antony Kay - allowing Dagnall to race clear and slide the ball underneath the advancing Ian Bennett to restore parity in the scoreline.

Both sides were looking for a winner as the fourth official signalled at least four minutes of added time, but the nearest either side got was when Ward had a typically powerful shot blocked by a defender in the area.

BOOKING - Danny Ward was shown a yellow card in the closing moments for dissent - driving the ball into the ground after a throw-in decision went against the Terriers.


Town's team (4-4-2):

Ian Bennett; Gary Naysmith, Antony Kay, Peter Clarke (c), Jack Hunt; Gary Roberts (Danny Ward 67), Damien Johnson, Tommy Miller, Scott Arfield; Alan Lee (Lee Novak 78), Jordan Rhodes

Unused subs: Nick Colgan, Liam Cooper, Anton Robinson


Scunthorpe: Shane Duffy (45); Oliver Norwood (67)

Town: Gary Naysmith (72), Peter Clarke (73), Danny Ward (90)

Attendance: 5,858

Town: 2,194

    Data provided by Press Association


    Town was the first club to win three successive league titles in 1926. Only Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United have matched this feat.