Scunthorpe United’s fans are going into the final day of the season knowing the odds are firmly stacked against them in the fight for survival.
They’ve dropped into the bottom two courtesy of a horrible run of form that has seen them win just once in 13 matches. From a possible 39 points, they’ve taken just six.
At the end of last season, they finished in the top six and were beaten by Rotherham in the play-offs, but a summer of change didn’t bring further success. They lost key players and having dismissed Graham Alexander in the run in to last season, they had a new manager as well.
Their problems started the moment they fired Alexander. He had got them into the top six, but it didn’t seem to be enough. Sadly, Nick Daws couldn’t replicate the success and he lasted mere weeks at the start of the season.
They fell into the trap of hire and fire, bringing in Stuart McCall. On paper, it looked an astute appointment given his success with Bradford City, but he still had the broken squad to deal with.
They rallied, briefly, and looked to put their struggles behind them, but the weakness of their playing staff has recently been laid bare. McCall left, meaning they’re now on their third manager in caretaker Andy Dawson.
Three managers in a season can only mean one thing; instability. It’s happened at Notts County in League Two and it looks like being a key factor in sending the Iron into the basement division next season.
Their recent performances haven’t just been bad, they’ve been appalling. They’re unable to defend and up front they offer no threat at all. Needing to win at Plymouth seems like a huge ask, but knowing that one win in the last eight matches could have kept them up will gall fans.
It’s made even worse knowing that county rivals Lincoln City look likely to replace them in League One.
Scunthorpe United fans have every right to be mad at those in control of their club for a messy season built on foundations of squad stripping and instability in the dugout.