Barnsley will look to put an end to their disappointing run of form when they travel to Scunthorpe this weekend.
Last Saturday’s 1-0 home reverse against Fleetwood was the Reds’ fifth consecutive defeat in League One which leaves Lee Johnson’s side sitting in the relegation zone and without a League victory since late September.
If the Reds are to halt that current run they will need to improve on their recent away form; having lost at both Southend and Doncaster in recent weeks, while the Club have not tasted victory on the road in League One since August when they beat Millwall 3-2 at the Den.
Scunthorpe meanwhile are in fine form, with four wins from their last five League games including last weekend’s 3-0 success at Chesterfield.
That triumph saw Mark Robins’ side move up to 12th place and just four points outside the play-off places and with the Iron searching for their third home win in a row this weekend, Glanford Park is far from the perfect location as Barnsley aim to end their losing streak.
Barnsley and Scunthorpe will meet for the third time already this season when Lee Johnson takes his side to North Lincolnshire this weekend.
The clash – which will be hosted at Glanford Park for the fourth consecutive time in this fixture – comes after two meetings in the space of 21 days earlier this season.
In August the Reds came out on top 7-6 on penalties after a hard fought 1-1 draw in the League Cup, while three weeks later and Johnson’s men came out victorious once again, with strikes from Lewin Nyatanga and Marley Watkins securing the Club’s place in the next round of the Football League Trophy.
Those two results extended Barnsley’s unbeaten run against Scunny to three games following February’s 1-0 win at Glanford Park, when Josh Scowen’s second-half goal was enough to earn all three points for the Reds.
Barnsley did not have it all their own way last season however, with Paddy Madden’s brace helping the Iron secure a 2-1 triumph at Oakwell in November.
Barnsley will welcome midfielder Ben Pearson back into the squad this weekend following his suspension.
The on-loan Manchester United man served the one-match ban after accumulating five yellow cards this season but will return to the Reds starting XI at Glanford Park.
Pearson’s return is a timely boost for head coach Lee Johnson, with Conor Hourihane, Adam Davies and Ryan Williams still missing for the Reds.
Back in the fold - Ben Pearson
In attack Marley Watkins remains a doubt, with the forward absent for the last two games due to an ankle problem.
If the former Inverness striker fails to recover Johnson may opt to start again with the pace of winger Lloyd Isgrove out wide, but with Simeon Jackson and Michael Smith waiting for their chance the Barnsley boss may shuffle his pack against the Iron.
For Scunthorpe, former Barnsley boss Mark Robins could be tempted to field the same starting XI for the fifth game in a row this weekend.
The same Scunny side has played in the Club’s recent outings against Oldham, Shrewsbury, Gillingham and Chesterfield, and with no new injury or suspension worries it could be a case of same again.
If manager Robins does opt to freshen things up forward Luke Williams is eager for a start, while fellow front man Darius Henderson could be in line for a comeback after returning to training in recent weeks.
Man in the Middle
Stuart Attwell will take charge of Barnsley for the second time this season when they come up against Scunthorpe on Saturday. The Premier League official oversaw the Reds’ 2-1 home defeat against Shrewsbury in early September which was the fifth Barnsley game to be refereed by Attwell and the fourth loss suffered by the Club in his company.
The Reds’ sole success when the Warwickshire-born referee has been in charge came earlier this year when they defeated Walsall 3-0 at Oakwell after a George Waring brace and a late Sam Winnall strike. The young official is yet to show a red card when running the rule over the Reds but so far this term Attwell has dished out three reds and 36 yellows in 13 games.
Despite meeting Barnsley already this season it will be the referee’s first involvement with Scunthorpe since 2014 this weekend. On that occasion Scunny went down to a 3-1 loss at Swindon which is one of three defeats inflicted on the Iron when Attwell has been at the helm. It is not all doom and gloom for Saturday’s hosts however, with the Club winning their other two meetings in Attwell’s company against both Plymouth and Exeter.
Their Star Man
Despite boasting a strong squad, it is difficult to look anywhere else but Irish forward Paddy Madden as Scunthorpe’s pivotal figure once again this term. The former Carlisle and Yeovil man – who penned a new three year deal with the Iron in August – has already netted 10 times this season, with the first of those coming back in August against Barnsley.
A brace at home to Crewe four days later represented a strong start to the campaign for the Republic of Ireland international – who has also weighed in with two assists so far this season - and despite only netting twice in his next nine appearances, Madden has returned to fine form in recent weeks.
The 25-year-old – who bagged 17 goals last season for Scunny – struck a second-half winner against Fleetwood earlier this month, before putting the Iron 3-2 ahead against Oldham - in a game they went onto win 4-2 – a week later. Madden continued his return to goal scoring form with another winning strike against Shrewsbury in his side’s next game, before bagging an important brace in last weekend’s win at Chesterfield.
Those four victories have seen the Iron climb up the League One ladder in recent weeks and with Madden beginning to forge a strong partnership with new signing Tom Hopper in attack, a Barnsley defence which has seen Madden score past them three times in the past four meetings between the two Clubs will be on their toes this weekend.
On Tuesday 30 September 2008, Huddersfield-born forward Reuben Noble-Lazarus became both Barnsley’s and the Football League’s youngest ever player at the age of 15 years and 45 days. The bulky attacker was introduced as an 84th minute substitute in the Club’s 3-0 defeat at Ipswich, which was one of two appearances for the youngster in the 2008-09 campaign. After two more outings in the following season, Noble-Lazarus would make his first start and score his first goal for the Tykes in the 2010-11 season at the age of 17. The versatile front man played the opening 75 minutes as Barnsley drew 2-2 at home to Doncaster in April 2011, before notching his first goal for the Club a month later in a 1-0 Oakwell success against Millwall.
Noble-Lazarus – who is of Grenadian descent – featured 24 times in the following two campaigns and struck his second goal for the Reds in December 2012 against Leicester City. Despite that strike and five further outings for Barnsley at the start of the 2013-14 season, he joined Saturday’s hosts Scunthorpe on loan in October 2013. The forward made his Scunny debut in a 2-0 home defeat against Accrington Stanley but went on to help his new side win three games on the bounce against Portsmouth, Rochdale and Torquay. Despite starting two of those games he returned to Oakwell and made another seven appearances for the Club which included his third goal in Barnsley colours which came in a 3-1 victory at Reading.
That win was not enough to help the Reds secure their Championship status however and Noble-Lazarus began last season in League One with the Reds. Just three months into the campaign though and the Yorkshireman joined third tier rivals Rochdale on loan. Two goals in his first four games for Dale quickly enhanced his reputation at Spotland and despite not scoring in his next four outings, his move to Lancashire was made permanent in January after penning an 18-month deal with Dale following 49 appearances for the Reds.
Scunthorpe United’s last five home games: (LWLWW)
Scunthorpe United 0-1 Blackpool
Scunthorpe United 1-0 Coventry City
Scunthorpe United 0-1 Walsall
Scunthorpe United 1-0 Fleetwood Town
Scunthorpe United 2-1 Shrewsbury Town
Barnsley’s last five away games: (WDLWL)
Scunthorpe United 1-2 Barnsley (Cup)
Blackpool 1-1 Barnsley
Doncaster Rovers 2-1 Barnsley
Bradford City 1-2 Barnsley (Cup)
Southend United 2-1 Barnsley
Going to the match?
Scunthorpe United plays at Glanford Park, its address is as follows:
Jack Brownsword Way
How to get there
From all routes, M180: The ground has got be one of the easiest to find in the Football League. It is situated on the outskirts of Scunthorpe, very close to the motorway. Leave the M180 at Junction 3 and take the M181 for Scunthorpe. At the end of this motorway, you will see the ground on your right. Turn right at the first roundabout onto the A18 and right again into the large car park at the ground.
Car parking at the ground is available for 600 cars, priced at very reasonable £3. Limited street parking available.
The station is over two miles away from the ground. Turn left out of the station and head towards the crossroads (facing a church) and turn right into Oswald Road, going past a set of traffic lights and the Honest Lawyer and Blue Bell pubs. At the next traffic lights turn left into Doncaster Road (where there are a number of fast food outlets). Then just go straight down this road and you will eventually reach Glanford Park on your left.
Senior Over 65 £16.00
Full Time Student with NUS £16.00
Young Adult (18-21) £16.00
Juvenile Under 18 £12.00
Juvenile Under 16 £7.00
Juvenile Under 12 FREE (only with full paying adult. Max 2)
Tickets will remain on sale through the box office until 4pm on Friday 30th October, subject to availability.
The official club coaches depart Oakwell at 12:30pm on the day of the game, priced at £14 per ticket.