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Opposition Profile: Scunthorpe United

17 June 2017

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A new feature where we take a closer look at who Rovers will face in League One next season.

Scunthorpe United

Founded: 1899
Nickname: The Iron

Formed in 1899, Scunthorpe United turned professional in 1912 and joined the Football League in 1950.

The club achieved promotion to Division Two in 1958, where it stayed until 1964, but has spent most of its time in the Football League in the bottom tier.

The Iron have enjoyed more success in recent years however. Promoted from League Two in 2005, they were then crowned champions of League One in 2007.

The North Lincolnshire club then spent three of the next four seasons in the Championship, winning the League One play-off final at Wembley in 2009.

Relegated to League One in 2011, the club then suffered a further blow when they were relegated to League Two in 2013, before bouncing back at the first attempt.

The Manager: Graham Alexander

A specialist right-back, Graham Alexander started his career as a youth player at Scunthorpe United, making his first team debut in April 1991.

Alexander made just shy of 200 appearances for the Iron, before joining Luton Town in 1995, where he made 180 appearances over the next four years.

In 1999, Alexander rejected a move to Burnley in favour of a move to Preston, where he would go on to captain the club and make exactly 400 appearances in a Lilywhites shirt, scoring 63 goals.

A move to Burnley did materialise in August 2007, nine years after they'd first tried to sign him, and Alexander, at the age of 37, played in all of Burnley's 61 league and cup games during the 2008-09 season, which culminated in their 1-0 Championship play-off final victory over Sheffield United at Wembley, which took the Clarets back to the top flight for the first time in 33 years.

He then became the oldest player to make a Premier League debut in August 2009 and was named Burnley's Player of the Year at the end of the season. Appointed captain for the 2010-11 season, the Scotland international made his 1,000th senior appearance for club and country in April 2011 - becoming only the second outfield player in English football history to achieve the feat.

Alexander returned to Preston in August 2011 and became joint-caretaker manager alongside David Unsworth. He scored with the very last kick of his career - a stoppage-time equaliser against Charlton Athletic in April 2012.

In June 2012, Alexander was appointed Head of Youth Development at Deepdale, before being handed the manager's job at Fleetwood Town that December. He guided the club into League One by winning the 2013-14 League Two play-off final, beating Burton Albion 1-0 at Wembley, but was sacked in September 2015.

Alexander was appointed manager of Scunthorpe in March 2016.

The Ground: Glanford Park

Opened in 1988, Glanford Park is a purpose-built stadium with a capacity of 9,088.

It is Scunthorpe's second stadium, with the Iron having previously played at the Old Showground from 1899 to 1988.

The ground's record attendance was set at 9,077 for a Carling Cup second round tie against Manchester United in September 2010.

Last Season: 3rd, League One

Former Rovers youngster Josh Morris scored 19 league goals, as Scunthorpe reached the League One play-offs courtesy of a third-place finish.

A disappointing run of results throughout February and March, which saw the Iron win just two of 13 league games, losing eight, ultimately proved costly, as they finished four points outside the automatic promotion positions.

Graham Alexander's side met Millwall in the play-offs and after a goalless draw at The Den in the opening game, Scunthorpe suffered a 3-2 defeat back at Glanford Park.

In the cup competitions, the Iron lost 2-1 at home to Bristol City in the second round of the EFL Cup and 3-1 away to Charlton Athletic in the first round of the FA Cup.

Last Meeting: August 12th 2014

Rovers suffered a shock 1-0 defeat at home to Scunthorpe in the last meeting between the two clubs in August 2014.

Neal Bishop scored the only goal of the game at Ewood Park, as the Iron progressed through to the second round of the Capital One Cup.

The last league meeting between the two teams was way back in April 1973, when the clubs played out a 1-1 draw in the old Third Division at the Old Showground.

  • Don't forget, there's just four days to go until the 2017-18 EFL fixtures are released!

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