Boss Mark Cooper hails Forest Green hat-trick hero Jamille Matt
Forest Green boss Mark Cooper was delighted to see Jamille Matt add goals to his game as the in-form striker’s hat-trick helped his side sink Scunthorpe
The treble – only Rovers’ second since their ascent into the Football League – turned the match around after Aaron Jarvis’ early opener for the Iron, with substitute Matt Stevens wrapping up a 4-1 victory in stoppage time.
“Jamille’s been a bit frustrated because he hasn’t scored the goals he thinks he should have, but his performances have been brilliant,” Cooper said.
“I don’t really judge him on goals because he’s a target man first and foremost. But goals breed confidence and he’ll be hoping to carry it on from here.
“I hope enjoys his night because he deserves to. They were all proper centre-forward’s goals.
“It was a good win for us, but it was probably our worst performance of the season.
“You could tell we travelled on the day – for the first 15 minutes we were still on the motorway – but we dug in, the boys were fantastic again and, after we recovered from conceding the goal, I thought we controlled it.
“We have to look at the Jarvis goal as a bit of a wake-up call, but from then on we started to play a bit and looked assured. We’ve just got to make sure we start better than that.”
Jarvis’ ninth-minute opener – on his first Football League start – came during Scunthorpe’s best spell of the game, but Matt’s close-range equaliser lifted the visitors, after which they never looked back.
The striker glanced in a header from a corner in the 33rd minute to double his own and Rovers’ tally before hooking in a third seven minutes from time. Stevens came off the bench to complete the scoring in added time, finding the top corner with a rasping shot from the edge of the box.
Scunthorpe boss Neil Cox accused his young side of being “naive” and thought they were bullied, in particular by hat-trick hero Matt.
“It was very frustrating. We had a game plan to press them and play high up the pitch, and for the first 15 or 20 minutes it worked,” he said.
“I thought we were excellent early on. We got a goal in front, had a good chance to go 2-0 up – which we didn’t take – and then we hit the self-destruct button.
“I could see some of the boys’ heads go down at 1-1, then we concede from a set play and we lack that know-how to get back in the game.
“Naive is the word that best sums us up at the moment. We’re a young side – I’ve said that before – but we have to man up and get on with it.
“We have to play League Two football, win the 50-50s and battle. At moment we’re trying to be too pretty.”