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Spanner in the Works!

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 22/12/2003

SATURDAY'S postponement of the Wrexham game has placed an unexpected burden upon Alan Pouton. With Jason Crowe due to play in the Boxing Day clash with Oldham, the match being called off now means he will miss the clash with the Latics and Alan Pouton may have to play two games in three days.

Town boss Paul Groves had hoped to lighten the load on Town's returning midfield hero, who made an unexpected return to first team action nine days ago at Bournemouth.

Crowe's sending off in that game, and his subsequent three match suspension, was compounded last week by a further unexpected one game ban for picking up five booking. With the Boxing Day clash falling between Crowe's two suspensions, Groves has intended to play Crowe in that game to give Pouton a break in his comeback schedule.

"The implications are that Jason doesn't get the Oldham game in anymore and he gets a four-game suspension in effect. It takes away a player that we would have utilised on Boxing Day," Groves told the Grimsby Telegraph.

"We were going to change things around but whether we get that luxury now, with the numbers that we have, we'll have to wait and see. We're aware that some people may not be able to do the two in three days and we'll have to look at it", explained Groves.

If Groves were not to play Pouton in one of the games he could either play himself in midfield, or move Stuart Campbell into the centre, and recall Marcel Cas to the starting line-up on the right of midfield.

36-year-old Iffy Onuora is a strong candidate to be rested for either the Oldham game on Boxing Day, or the Peterborough clash two days later, with Darren Mansaram likely to be given a chance to stake a claim for a starting berth in the Mariners' line-up.

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