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Should Russell Slade be sacked?

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Let's Get Behind Them!

By: Jason Ives
Date: 21/12/2001

IT WOULD SEEM that us loyal Mariners supporters have no reason to be full of Christmas cheer at the moment.

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On a downward spiral to Division 2, unhappy at Lennie's management, players showing lack of effort and motivation, fans having different ideas on whom to blame and the never ending saga of the new ground 'will there - wont there be'.

However we all have one thing in common - our love and passion for Grimsby Town Football Club and our desire to see them upset the odds yet again. Yes, we are in the middle of a disastrous run of results, the board are appearing not be bothered about the future of our club, the small support is in danger of dwindling even more but surely that is the wrong way to go about things. Personally speaking, I have supported Town for as long as I can remember, standing on a milk crate in the Barrett Stand to see my heroes, gazing in awe at the stands, the passion showing in everyone's face as the action unfolded in front of us. Who can forget the brilliant performances of past cup runs, the day at Wimbledon that saw us Town fans in every newspaper and TV station in the land, putting larger clubs to shame with our support, the day when Marc North, sadly no longer with us, scored twice to silence the crowd at Ayresome Park, and being mobbed at the motorway services by jubilant Town fans on the way back, the Everton upsets, Liverpool, I could go on.

On the other hand I remember the disappointments: relegations, the aforementioned Marc North missing a crucial penalty against Aldershot, the 7-1 drubbing at Sheff Wed. Every matchday brings its feelings: anticipation, excitement, disappointment, joy. You can never tell what will occur, that's the joy of being a football supporter.

I am immensely proud to come from Grimsby, to be a Grimsby fan, I enjoy watching them and if I cannot attend I am glued to the radio, websites or teletext so that I get the feeling of being present, picturing the images in my head. Due to family circumstances I live in Berkshire at present but my passion does not fade. The abuse I receive when I wear my team's colours does not deter me, it encourages me. When I hear supporters from other teams say "why support them?", I do not explain: they wouldn't understand for they are not like me and never will be.

Therefore, I hope my ramblings will be read by fellow Mariners fans and understood; that they feel as I do. However bad things look at the moment it is time for us to get behind the lads, not desert them. I could not bear not attending a match or, perish the thought, my beloved team not being in existence for a particular reason. For those fans who are thinking of staying away I implore them not to, that only provides more reason for the club not being in a position to continue, and the lack of ambition presently surrounding the club. Let's all start on Boxing Day against Coventry. Fill the ground, make as much noise as possible for the whole game, if the game is going against us shout louder, encourage! At the end of the game cheer, then go home and think about the day.

Do you want to be able to see Town perform at this level, to upset the odds, to get the new ground, to see better players? THEN go on the Saturday against Portsmouth, cheer loud again. We all want the same things - Let's all join together and support the lads - show the team that whatever the board thinks, the supporters are passionate and will follow them - that is the only way the club can go forward.

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