Scunthorpe United will be one to watch this season with several new arrivals joining last season’s success stories at Glanford Park. Mark Robins took over in the early months as Russ Wilcox was sacked in October. Robins has been allowed to put his own slant on a side that recovered well after an abysmal start, although more consistency will be needed if they are to challenge for the top half.
Iron fans will be eager to relive the Championship seasons of 2009 to 2011. Back then Brian Laws ruled the roost and Robins will have similar expectations. The former Huddersfield Town manager has been given enough backing in the transfer window, and has let his signings do the talking. Former Preston North End trio, Scott Laird, Scott Wiseman and Jack King, all departed the club after falling out of favour with manager Simon Grayson, and the step up certainly would not have helped their chances of first team football. Jack King has the ability to play in a variety of positions although was preferred at the heart of defence in his Lancashire spell. Full backs Laird and Wiseman are both consistent names that will be a blessing to the formerly leaky Scunthorpe rearguard.
Striking options will be at a premium this term, with 19 goal frontman Paddy Madden ready to lead the line one again. His pace caused havoc among League One defenses last term, and the Irishman will be ready to embark on another double figures season. It is a mystery over who will partner the former Yeovil man. With former Glanford Park loanee Luke Williams returning on a permanent deal, he will have little acclimatizing to do. After his loan spell expired Williams joined Peterborough United, making just a single appearance. He will hope in North Lincolnshire after chopping his way through 4 clubs in the last year. Other forward options include Dutch frontman Kevin Van Veen and bruising striker Darius Henderson. Henderson was released by Leyton Orient after their relegation last term. His physical nature and leadership from the front will make him a crucial cog in Mark Robins plans.
The midfield has also been bolstered by the arrivals of Stephen Dawson and Jamie Ness. Many supporters will argue that their side did not score enough goals from midfield last term. Stephen Dawson is not a notorious goal scorer but his aggressive style gives him the edge over many of his midfield rivals. Gary McSheffery is certainly not a secret weapon, but after disappearing from the limelight in recent years, it was nice to see the ex Birmingham man back at his best. The 32-year-old hit the net 8 times last year, his set piece wizardry becoming increasingly important in the Irons rise up the table. So long as McSheffery and whoever plays up front are on the same wavelength scoring should not be a problem. At the other end of the field, the backline will have to improve, the summers additions do that, and i can see a successful season ahead.