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The Scunthorpe Problem

Started on 5 December 2022 by Feliks
Latest Reply on 8 December 2022 by Feliks
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The Scunthorpe Problem

After 72 years in the Football League, Scunthorpe United were officially relegated to the fifth tier of English football after a dismal 2021/22 season in which they won just four of their 46 games and finished a full 18 points from safety.

The Iron were harshly criticized by their manager Keith Hill, who called out their “terrible culture” at the club following the relegation. Hill claimed that players were already looking to leave by January and lamented a ‘poor standard’ that permeated the club from the training ground through to matchday.

Hill refused to lump the blame on the Swann family, who still remain the majority shareholders of the club, but fan dissatisfaction with the owners of the club remains high despite Peter Swann’s resignation as chairman in March. The club is reportedly in danger of administration after once being one of the most financially prudent clubs in England in years gone by.

A proud club with a long history in the Football League, Scunthorpe United are in dire needs of stability and a steady hand, or they face falling even further into irrelevance in the English pyramid…
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Scunthorpe United F.C.

Scunthorpe United Football Club is a professional association football club based in the town of Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire, England. The side currently competes in the National League, the fifth tier of the English football league system. The team is nicknamed "The Iron", and has played in a home strip of claret and blue for most of the club's history. They play their home games at Glanford Park, having moved from their original stadium, the Old Show Ground, in 1988.
Trophy Cabinet

EFL Third Division/League One (x2): 1957-58, 2006-07
Midland League (x2): 1926-27, 1938-39

Home Ground

Glanford Park

Location: Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire
Opened: 1988
Capacity: 9,088


Liam Feeney

Current Squad


League History
Season Division Position Pl W D L GF GA GD Pts Notes
2021/22 EFL League Two 24th 46 4 14 28 29 90 -61 26 relegated
2022/23 National League 16th 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Keith Hill steps down as Scunthorpe manager

10 May 2022

Scunthorpe United have released Keith Hill from his contract as manager as the club prepares for relegation from the Football League.

Hill’s final match was a 7-0 thrashing at the hands of Bristol Rovers and his final press conference saw him call out the club’s ‘terrible culture’ and poor standards, while asking for total control over budgets and players.

The 52 year old had only been in charge since November and had expressed interest in continuing in the role but his record is poor, with just two wins and 22 defeats in 33 games at the helm. Hill told reporters on Saturday that the club needed “somebody like me to make sure there's a successful future” but this sentiment has not been shared by the club’s owners.

Scunthorpe United will play outside of the Football League for the first time in 72 years next season, amid uncertainty around the financial viability of the club. Peter Swann stood down as chairman last month but the unpopular Swann family retains majority ownership of a club that was once one of just three in the Football League to be debt-free. Now, the Iron are facing mounting bills and may be in danger of administration.
Hardly surprising to see him leave given his thoughts on the playing squad. Whoever comes in has a big job on their hands.

Scunthorpe United: Ten players released after relegation from EFL

13 May 2022

Managerless Scunthorpe United have released ten players following their relegation from the English Football League.

Goalkeeper Rory Watson heads the list, after making 41 appearances as they finished bottom of League Two.

Jamaica international Anthony Grant, Tom Pugh, Harry Bunn, Aaron Jarvis and Lewis Thompson will also depart.

Reserve goalkeeper Tom Collins, Harry Jessop, Harry Baker and Kenan Dunnwald-Turan are leaving as their contracts are expiring.

However, the club has exercised the option on contract extensions for teenage duo Cameron Wilson and Dan Gallimore, and new contracts have been offered to Jai Rowe, 20, and 19-year-old Finley Shrimpton.

Watson, 26, played more than 100 times for the Iron after his arrival from non-league North Ferriby United in January 2017.

Scunthorpe were relegated out of the EFL for the first time in 72 years with four games to spare, finishing the season with a 7-0 defeat at Bristol Rovers which prompted manager Keith Hill to criticise the "terrible" culture at the club. Hill was sacked three days ago following these comments.
Ahhh, Scunthorpe. I remember the good old days of early FM's where they were in the Championship! FM GOAT's like Billy Sharp, Grant McCann, Andy Keogh and Martin Paterson were there along the way, and could be bought dirt cheap.

The club's fallen a long way since then unfortunately.

I'm intrigued to see who replaces Hill in the dugout, and the rebuild that entails following their appointment. They'll have a hell of a job on their hands, but if they get things right...Glanford Park will be bouncing.

Good luck :D

Liam Feeney appointed as the Iron's new first team manager

20 May 2022

Scunthorpe United are pleased to announce Liam Feeney as the club’s new first team player-manager.

Liam joined the club from Tranmere Rovers in January and was made captain of the club before expressing interest in taking on the managerial position following the departure of Keith Hill.

He will become the first player-manager in the Iron’s history, and brings with him over 500 games of Football League experience with the likes of AFC Bournemouth, Bolton Wanderers and Blackburn Rovers.

Chairman Lee Turnbull said he was “thrilled” to reveal Liam would be taking the club forward, noting that he had a “thorough understanding” of the current situation at Glanford Park and a “keen sense of responsibility” in bringing stability to the club.

Liam will now get underway with pre-season training, and bolster the first team squad ahead of our National League campaign.

Feeney: Youth development and financial stability are priorities

28 May 2022

Scunthorpe United’s new player-manager Liam Feeney will tackle the Iron’s first campaign outside of the Football League in 72 years, but immediate focus on promotion is not his first priority.

The 35 year old right winger spoke to the press for the first time since stepping up to the managerial role at Glanford Park, emphasising the need for financial stability at the club.

“Everyone wants to be back in the Football League as soon as possible, but the reality at the moment is that we’re in danger of going into administration, so really that’s the main thing we need to be focusing on right now.”

“This might mean we don’t make big signings, to try and dominate the league straight away. We have to be smart, financially smart, in every decision we make at the moment, and if there’s a kid who we think can make that step up to the next level instead of bringing in an established player then that might be the financially correct decision.”

Feeney played alongside a number of teenagers in the closing stages of the 2021/22 League Two campaign, as Scunthorpe United suffered a number of heavy defeats, but believes that the club can turn to its youth team players this season.

“We have a number of young players who we feel are ready to make that next step, some of them already got some experience in the first team squad at the back end of last season and some of them haven’t yet. We don’t want to throw anyone in the deep end, but the next few months we’ll learn who’s got it in them to play in the first team, and I do believe there’s a few at the club who can do that for us.”

Feeney has also confirmed he will still be taking on a major first team role as a player this year.

“I’m really confident in the staff I have around me, Michael Nelson will be staying on as assistant manager and there’s already a relationship there where I feel like I can trust him and lean on him, especially when I’m out on the pitch. I definitely have my own philosophies and my own style of football I want to play, and Michael will help me implement that. It’s definitely something I’m aware of, not burning myself out by taking on too much responsibility.”

“The final thing I want to leave with the Iron faithful, is that we know it’s been a really really tough few years, and that we’re going to learn and build from those experiences, build from the ground up, and provide a stable base for the club to move forward. There’s no band-aid solutions and it’s going to be a lot of work but the club is committed to this now, I’m committed to this, and I want the fans to know that we’re not going to rest until this club is back on its feet.”

11 youth players promoted to first team squad

2 June 2022

11 youth players, including Daniel Gallimore and Cameron Wilson (pictured), have been promoted to the first team squad at the Iron as Liam Feeney looks to revitalise his squad.

The club welcomes the 11 academy graduates, some of whom have already featured in the squad previously, and looks forward to their promising careers at Glanford Park.

Owen Foster, Ethan Young, Harry Lewis, Finley Shrimpton, Daniel Gallimore, Jack Moore-Billam and Cameron Wilson have all made their senior debuts for the club while Ewan Oxborough, Josh Murtagh, Ben Pike and Finn Abraham will be pushing for their first team debuts.

This move has bolstered the first team squad to 20 players, after ten were released following our 2021/22 campaign.
Interested to see how the player-manager dynamic will work at Scunthorpe, particularly with rumours of poor dressing room atmosphere going around. I think young Cameron might need a haircut though! :))
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1 yearEdited

Scunthorpe signs Jude Russell

13 June 2022

Scunthorpe United have completed the signing of defender Jude Russell on a free transfer.

The 20 year old centre back is the first new signing of player-manager Liam Feeney’s tenure and will add to an undermanned Iron backline that includes George Taft and youngster Ethan Young.

Russell was released by Brentford’s B team in May after spending a year in west London. He previously spent three years in the Crystal Palace youth set-up and is yet to make his professional appearance.

“Jude was someone that stood out to us as being hungry for improvement as a player, and keen to prove himself,” said Feeney.

“We have a number of promising young defenders already making waves on the training ground, and Jude was that final piece of the puzzle. I’m very confident in his abilities at this level.”

Teenaged Foster undaunted by starting responsibilities

17 June 2022

Owen Foster turned seventeen in January but his confidence belies his age as he prepares for a big season between the sticks in the National League.

Scunthorpe United released Rory Watson after their disastrous League Two campaign last season and have confirmed they will be promoting Foster to a first team role after two league appearances in 2021/22.

He was the man of the match in his debut appearance and won the club’s Young Player of the Year award for his efforts at senior and junior level, and he believes he’s got a solid grounding to build from.

“I was really happy with how I got on last year, and it was good to get a game at the end of the season just to see what it was like. It’s made me pretty confident I can keep playing now, and just keep getting better.”

His former manager Keith Hill backed him to represent England one day, but for now Foster is focusing on proving doubters wrong that he’s able to make an impact as the league’s youngest goalkeeper.

“I try not to worry about what other people are saying, you know, I’ve got to focus on just what I’m doing, where I’m at. I wouldn’t be taking on this kind of challenge if I didn’t have that belief in me, it’s obviously a bit scary sometimes just thinking about it but I’ve got to start somewhere.”

The well-spoken 17 year old is still finishing school in his hometown of Kingston-upon-Hull, a unique experience for a National League goalkeeper. But having shown glimpses of talent last season, Scunthorpe United will be hoping he can become a linchpin of its young team going forward.
A real emphasis on the youth being placed at Scunthorpe it seems. From the manager down to the players. It’s certainly a rebuild that will be coming. Best of luck!
Russell looks a great player for Scunthorpe's new level despite being only aged 20. A new direction seemed desperately required here and youth team players getting new deals, teenagers becoming #1s and signings like Russell are key indicators. Very interested to see how the season pans out as a result of this.

Calvin Miller joins the Iron

18 July 2022

Scunthorpe United welcomes Scottish youth international Calvin Miller to the club following his release from Chesterfield.

The 24 year old made his professional debut for SPFL powerhouses Celtic, and has also played for Dundee, Harrogate Town and Notts County in the past.

Miller will compete with youngster Harry Lewis for a starting role on the left wing, and has made 50 appearances at National League level over the past two years.

Liam Feeney was pleased to make his second piece of business this transfer window.

“Calvin has a lot of talent and comes from a really strong football program at Celtic, so we were delighted to bring him into the fold. He understands this division and its challenges really well.”

Feeney confirmed he is not looking to make any further signings ahead of our season opener against Yeovil on the 6th of August.

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