Graham Alexander irritated as Scunthorpe blow lead against 10-man Northampton

Graham Alexander irritated as Scunthorpe blow lead against 10-man Northampton

Manager Graham Alexander could not hide his disappointment after League One leaders Scunthorpe were held to a 1-1 draw by 10-man Northampton.

The Iron seemed well on course for an eighth win in 12 matches when, while leading 1-0 with an hour gone, the visitors had midfielder Matty Taylor sent off.

Instead of hammering home their advantage, Scunthorpe sat back and they were punished when the Cobblers broke upfield and Jak McCourt fired home.

"I can't lie, we're disappointed to have only drawn the game," said Alexander, whose side saw their lead at the top of the table cut to a point.

"I thought we started ever so well, caused Northampton all sorts of problems and deservedly took the lead.

"We should have built on that, but we didn't and slowly we lost control of the game. When they went down to 10 men we should have really asserted our authority on the game, but we didn't and it cost us.

"Credit to Northampton for doing what they did, but we know with the quality we have we should have seen the game out."

Morris scored an exquisite goal to put the Iron ahead a minute before the break, curling a free-kick from just outside the penalty area right into the top corner - his 13th goal of the campaign in all competitions.

"It was a great moment, probably the highlight of what was a scrappy game," Alexander said.

"Once we got the lead we should have built on it, not just tried to see the game out.

"It's disappointing, but when you look at the season we've had so far, the players have been superb.

"Not every game is going to go our way and today was one of those. We've got another point on our total, which is the main thing."

Northampton were good value for the draw, having responded well to being a goal and later a man down.

Boss Rob Page described the decision to send off Taylor for a foul on Neal Bishop as "very harsh", but was delighted with the spirit the Cobblers showed which led to the 74th-minute equaliser.

They charged upfield after Scunthorpe had lost possession, pushing forward and McCourt finished at the second attempt following good work by Jonathan Hooper.

"The belief in the dressing room after today, and some of the other performances we've had this season, is outstanding," said Page.

"We can grow in confidence from this. We went down to 10 men and yet we're disappointed with only having taken a point and not won the game.

"We never seem to know when we're beaten. We have a never-say-die attitude which is something we've brought in and pride ourselves on.

"It's highlighted in the changing room in big, bold letters - 'one more round' - and we keep going right to the end. Today typified what we are about."