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Paul Hurst Pre Scunthorpe United

28 September 2017

Gaffer on tough Scunthorpe test

Shrewsbury Town boss Paul Hurst believes Saturday’s game against Scunthorpe could be one of their toughest yet.

The game pits first placed Town against 5th placed Scunthorpe, who have lost just once this season.

Much of that has been due to their defensive strength, which has seen them concede just three goals all season and Paul admits they will be a difficult side to break down.

"I think it’s something like seven out of the last eight they have kept clean sheets, so that is some record", Hurst told the Press.

"I think that says a lot about organisation. It also says a lot about the work ethic of the team, because you don’t keep that many clean sheets if you’ve got a team that maybe aren’t working hard or doing what they want.

"They just missed out on promotion last year and were riding high at the top of the table for some time, so I think they made a statement last year that they are certainly proper contenders and have the ambition to get into the Championship."

As well as being defensively strong, Scunthorpe have a number of players that can hurt Town and Hurst is wary of those.

“You’ve got Morris who had an outstanding season last season and I think has grabbed a couple of goals already”, said Paul.

“Up top they’ve got Madden, Hopper, Van Veen and Novak – who was rested in midweek, so they have got a very good squad, which is what you need and they’ve got players that if they do need to change it, it doesn’t really weaken them.

“There’s a lot of experience in there and they look like a team that will be in the mix-up because I think they’ve got the know-how, which can be very important.”

The table currently sees Town sit four points clear after the opening 10 fixtures and Paul admits that it’s pleasing, but wants to keep building on the success.

“It obviously makes good reading for us”, admitted Hurst.

“It’s been a fantastic effort from the players to be top and to be 10 games unbeaten is some start, but there isn’t even a quarter of the season gone and there’s still a lot of hardwork to go, but it is pleasing and great for the fans to be able to tell their colleagues or friends that we are top of the table.”

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