Yeovil Town take on Scunthorpe United tonight in a League One match at Huish Park. The game will be Yeovil's first match of 2009, following the postponement of two matches due to icy conditions. The weather is mild tonight, and so there is no danger of this game becoming a third.
The visitors arrive at Huish Park tonight in 6th place, and therefore 12 places higher than Yeovil in the league table. Like Yeovil, they've not played in the league since December 28th, although they did manage to complete their FA Cup Third Round fixture on January 3rd without problems.
The two sides met back in September at Glanford Park, with a 2-0 win seeing Yeovil comfortably outplayed, particularly during the first period. An Izzy Iriekpen header was added to by a Terrell Forbes own goal on the day, and assistant manager Steve Thompson told BBC Somerset felt that first half was a lesson in football:
"I was saying to the players when we had our meeting this morning that we've been competitive all season, home and away, but the one time that I think we weren't and we were over-run, was in the first half at Scunthorpe, when we lost the game 2-0. But that's the one time this season that I've felt that we were not competitive and were completely over-run. If that's not a warning, then nothing is. They came out of the traps first thing, and I think they'll try and do the same again and we're going to have to try and match them."
The Glovers go into the game without midfielders Marc Bircham and Darren Way, who will not play again this season, whilst another midfielder, Lee Peltier starts a two match ban. Thommo told the Western Daily Press that there were a couple of other problems caused by the club having to move onto astroturf pitches, but he didn't want to say who they were:
"Due to training on astro-turf or indoors all week it did cause us a few niggles. I am not going to say we haven't got a few niggles even now but I will not divulge who because that would play into Scunthorpe's hands."
Even if all of the injury concerns Thommo mentions recover in time for the game, the Glovers have only 15 recognised first team players available, with striker Luke Rodgers not expected to feature even if he does complete his protracted transfer negotiations today. The bench will be filled by youngster Jordan Street, with Thommo himself and Rob Fitzgerald padding out the subs list if necessary. The Glovers also have one other person on the treatment table - manager Russell Slade! The Yeovil boss is currently ill, with Thommo taking control of the majority of training matters, although it would be a surprise if Russell did not take up his position in the dugout tonight.
Scunthorpe will go into the match without club captain Cliff Byrne who is suspended, whilst Ian Morris (knee ligaments) is a long term absentee. Otherwise their only other concern is Ben May, who has had both flu and injury concerns recently.
The last four meetings between the two clubs have not been good ones from Yeovil's point of view. Four defeats, all without scoring a goal have seen the Iron gain superiority, although few will forget the two 4-3 wins the Glovers gained during 2005 across two seasons. The first of those was a home match played in late winter, so a repeat of that scenario would go down nicely!
The match kicks off at 7.45p.m. with tickets available for purchase on the night, subject to the usual matchday tariffs.
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