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Should Russell Slade be sacked?

Yes immediately
Give him one more game


Watford Preview

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 10/10/2002

THE Mariners go into Saturday's game with Watford in a confident mood after the fantastic 3-0 win over Ipswich on Tuesday night, but Watford will be no fools and are in a rich vein of form with three wins in the last five.

Home > 2002-2003 Season > Previews > Watford (a)

The Bottom Line

 After the fans were finally rewarded with a home win on Tuesday, The Mariners must now do what they haven't done all season - go two games without a defeat. A draw or a win would be fantastic for the Mariners, and although it is not a necessity it would prevent them growing too far adrift from the bottom of the table.

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Players To Watch



Steve Kabba

Danny Webber

After his two goals on Tuesday night Steve Kabba will be confident he can score goals against any defence. His harrying of opposition players, his commitment and pace up front have been an asset for Town in the last month or so, but was only really utilised on Tuesday. With some more quality balls on Saturday, he could add to his tally this season and help Town to another win. His loan spell from Crystal Palace ends in November and unsurprisingly Paul Groves is desperate to keep him at Blundell Park.

A livewire forward on loan from Manchester United until the end of the season. Webber has come up through the ranks at Old Trafford for years - joining at the age of 10. He made his league debut in a loan spell at Port Vale in 2001, but initially joined Watford on transfer deadline day last season in a brief loan spell. Manager Ray Lewington was quick to sign the 22 year old ahead of several clubs, including Grimsby, when he took over from Gianluca Vialli and has repaid the manager with two goals and some fine performances. Will give Raven and Ford a stern test.

Top Scorers



Robinson 3
Webber 2
Helguson 2
Three others on 2 goals

Kabba 3
Pouton 3
Barnard 2

Team News



  • The good news for the Mariners is that Steve Kabba should be fit to keep his place in the starting eleven. This means that only one change is likely to take place, with John McDermott returning to fitness and Iain Ward making way.

  • Elsewhere, Paul Groves will return to the squad but may opt to keep the Raven/Ford partnership at the back, the combination that kept a clean sheet on Tuesday night.

  • Young Wes Parker has been added to the squad and has been given the number 27 shirt. He has been brought in to cover for the likes of Groves and McDermott, who have only just regained full fitness.

  • Stacy Coldicott is now 100% fit but will do well to displace the impressive George Santos in midfield.
  • Former Arsenal and Everton midfielder Stephen Hughes could return to the squad after returning to full training after a long lay off. Striker Marcus Gayle is a fitness worry for manager Ray Lewington after hobbling off in the game against Brighton on Saturday. However, the Hornets are hopeful that the former Wimbledon striker will make it for the clash at Vicarage Road.

  • If he fails to make it then Stephen Glass will take his place, as he did on Saturday, in a 4-4-2 formation.
  • Probable Starting XI's


    Danny Coyne
    John McDermott (c)
    Simon Ford
    Paul Raven
    Darren Barnard
    Terry Cooke
    Stuart Campbell
    Alan Pouton
    George Santos
    Darren Mansaram
    Steve Kabba
    Alec Chamberlain
    Neil Cox
    Lloyd Doyley
    Paul Robinson
    Sean Dyche
    Neil Ardley
    Allan Nielsen
    Micah Hyde
    Marcus Gayle
    Danny Webber
    Heidar Helguson



    Paul Groves
    Steve Livingstone
    Stacy Coldicott
    Iain Ward
    Sean Allaway (GK)
    Dominic Foley
    Stephen Glass
    Richard Johnson
    Anthony McNamee
    Richard Lee (GK)

    Last Time Out

    That dreadful televised game on ITV last season was the last time the two sides met. The Mariners went down to a 2-0 loss at Vicaridge Road in a game where Tony Gallimore was sent off as was Watford loanee Jermaine Pennant. After this game, the Mariners started to revive their season, hauling 22 points from 12 games when they had got just 9 from 12. This game saw the last game for Town for Dutch midfielder Menno Willems.

    Town Team: Coyne, McDermott, Gallimore, Raven, Groves, Willems, Campbell (Butterfield), Burnett, Pouton (Allen), Taylor (Jevons), Boulding.
    Other Subs: David Smith, Steve Croudson Attendance: 12,163    Report

    Watford Head-to-Head (78th on The Opposition Ladder).


    Fishy prediction: A thrilling 2-2 draw! Reader's POMs


    Click on the link for directions to Vicarage Road.

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    Click on the link for ticket prices to Vicarage Road.

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