Iron drop down despite victory
Sat, 27 Apr 2013 19:11:00
Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino could not hide his disappointment with his side's below-par display against West Brom.
The lacklustre performance was the worst since the Argentinian replaced Nigel Adkins at the helm in January and brought an abrupt end to a six-match unbeaten streak.
"From my point of view we just didn't start in the game," Pochettino told Sky Sports.
"We didn't feel comfortable, especially when we conceded the first goal in the sixth minute.
"Then we became a bit fearful of their attacking strikers, who were quite fast, strong and physically fit."
Saints duo Gaston Ramirez and Danny Fox were given their marching orders in a fiery clash with the Baggies, which was all the more surprising considering how little both sides had to play for.
"I need to review the images on the TV and we'll see later on if they are actually red cards," he added.
"But what is true is that the team showed a side that has nothing to do with who we are and how we play."
To avoid relegation, the Iron also needed Colchester to lose their last game of the season at Carlisle. But that never looked like materialising.
Backed by the biggest crowd of the season, Scunthorpe pressed strongly throughout the opening half hour searching for an early goal they desperately needed.
They forced a succession of corners, but nothing would drop for them in front of goal. Then Swindon suddenly broke out from their defensive shell and were unlucky not to open the scoring.
Gary Roberts did have the ball in the net after 31 minutes only to see his diving header ruled out for offside.
Then centre-back Joe Devera rattled the post with another header from a free-kick, while goalkeeper Sam Slocombe twice rescued Scunthorpe with good saves to deny Adam Rooney and then James Collins.
The Iron huffed and puffed again in the second half but it was Swindon who snatched an 83rd-minute lead when James Collins fired home from close range from a right-wing cross from Andy Williams.
A scrambled 87th-minute equaliser by Michael Collins from as corner looked like only a consolation. But two minutes into stoppage time Mark Duffy fired them ahead from the penalty spot after substitute James Alabi had been brought down by visiting keeper Wes Foderingham.
And in the fourth minute of stoppage time Karl Hawley made it 3-1 from close range. But it was all too little, too late.