Leicester manager Nigel Pearson believes Paul Gallagher's hat-trick during the 5-1 demolition of Scunthorpe will prove especially significant for the striker.

The 25-year-old hit three as the Foxes remained sixth in the Coca-Cola Championship to celebrate the third anniversary of Milan Mandaric's takeover of the club in style.

Pearson said: "Paul Gallagher has had a bit of criticism so it's good for him to be able to walk off with the match ball. He will be a player who will be important for this club for the next few years."

Pearson remained grounded about the emphatic win.

He added: "This is a tough league and that's why I'm not going to get carried away by a good win and I'm not going to get too down when we lose."

But he was pleased the Foxes remain on course for a play-off berth, saying: "We are in a decent position at the moment but whether we remain there we will have to see.

"At some stage we may drop out of the top six, but our main aim is to be in the play-off shake-up at the end of the season."

Scunthorpe manager Nigel Adkins explained why he made no changes to his side at half-time when they were 4-0 down.

He said: "In the first half we got a real mauling. I decided to keep the same 11 on the pitch because I knew it would hurt them and wanted to make sure that they never wanted to have that feeling again.

"I didn't want to give anyone the easy option of coming off at half time and hiding away. I want this to be a wake-up call for the players. I know the result has hurt them but I now hope we can go on to better things."

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