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Paul Hurst Pre Scunthorpe United

15 March 2018

Gaffer looks ahead to Iron test

Shrewsbury Town boss Paul Hurst has urged his players to continue their run of good away form when they travel to Scunthorpe United on Saturday.

Town are unbeaten on the road since mid-January, having beaten Charlton Athletic, Fleetwood Town, Bristol Rovers and Portsmouth over the last two months.

Those results mean that Town now have the third best away record in the league and Paul has been impressed with how his side have competed on the road.

“To amass the points that the players have managed to do your form generally has to be good, but there is no doubt that some of the places we have got victories are difficult places to go”, said Hurst.

“I’ve always said that we feel we can win whether it’s at home or away. I’ve heard a lot of things over my time about being more positive away from home or about setting up differently, but that has never really been my way.

“We approach each game to try and win it and to be positive. Things might happen within a game where you have to change things tactically or personnel, but it’s always with winning a game in football in mind.”

This is perhaps Town’s hardest away game since their defeat at Ewood Park back in January as they take on a Scunthorpe team that are currently sitting fifth in League One and Hurst is well aware of the threats they pose.

“As a group they had their disappointment last year of losing in the play-offs, so they’ve got that experience”, Paul said.

“This season it was again about trying to win promotion. The Chairman is very strong in his backing of that football club and his ambition to reach the Championship.

“They’ve got two players that we know well in Ivan Toney, who we had a brief time after I joined, and Ryan Yates, who we had for longer. Ivan scored after Yatesy had hit the bar last week, so it won’t surprise me if both stay in the team.

“Ivan scored against the team that he’d been on-loan at earlier in the season (Wigan Athletic) last week and I’m sure he will be keen to do the same again, and both of them will be looking to get the victory for their new club.”

Last season Town picked up a vital 1-0 win at Glanford Park and whilst Paul acknowledges that a lot has changed since then, he would certainly take the same result again.

“I would take any kind of victory”, admitted Hurst.

“I liked the nil from last season, the clean sheet, and we spoke earlier in the week about it being a nice memory because it was a big win against a team that had had a long unbeaten home run.

“I don’t think it counts for anything this year, but in terms of a memory and a thought it certainly comes to mind. We also beat them earlier in the season, which is a little bit more relevant but things change and squads change.

“What we do know is that it’s a game against a team that will absolutely see play-offs as a must and a minimum requirement.”

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