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28/02 Barnsley Part 2

By: Tony Butcher
Date: 29/02/2004

THE Pontoon muttered like Mutley, but shook heads approvingly at Thorpe’s movement. He just looks like a striker. A minute or so later he proved it. Pettinger wellied a long kick down the centre left, caught on the breeze drifting, floating, going, going.

Home > 2003-2004 Season > Reports > Barnsley (h)

Grimsby Town 6 Barnsley 1
28 Feb 2004, Nationwide League Division 2

Thorpe was gone behind the defence, bearing down on goal. Red flappage, red panic, red foul. Ireland seemed to hold back Thorpe as he was about to shoot, perhaps a dozen yards out. Penalty, red card, happiness. Jevons took an age, walking around nervously and curled the ball against the foot of the right hand post as Beresford plunged the same way. The ball was then shinned out for a corner. He never looked like scoring.

And a minute later there was a long, long, long delay as Monk was stretchered off after crumpling on their left, just outside the area. Yep, the Tykes were in a terrible tizz. They just didn’t look bothered. And after 23 minutes, they were looking even less bothered. Thorpe, marvellously, rampaged down the left touchline, holding off what can only loosely be called a challenge by a defender. He bounded along the bye-line and tapped the ball back to Daws, who hit a low cross to the near post. Bodies converged, the ball plopped up and someone tried a header. The ball lolloped out to JEVONS on the centre right of the goal, who calmly opened up his body and steered the ball into the top left hand corner of the goal. Nice of the Barnsley players to just stand around and admire the scenery. Perhaps Handyside was caught in a wistful daydream, harking back to his glory days. In black and white.

Barnsley managed to get worse. Another couple of minutes later another Town chance. Crane, of all people, out on the right, stretched and slid a cross beyond the far post to Thorpe, who had again drifted away from his marker. Thorpe, about eight yards out rose like a colossus and thundered a header down towards the near post. Beresford slid across and the ball hit some part of his body and squirmed away for a corner. Jevons curled the corner on from the Town left, the ball arcing beyond the far post to ARMSTRONG, who smacked a powerful header high into the net from just a few yards out. The Town fans spotted Boulding warming up under the Police Box and politely enquired as to whether he knew what the score was.

At some point during the first half Ford made a good tackle. Stallard was almost through on goal, which for Barnsley was a highlight - something almost happened but didn’t. I know they’ve got three of our players, but do they really need to try on Town’s footballing personality too? Nice of them, all the same.

Ah, half an hour gone, Town a whirling dervish, Barnsley a basket case. Would Town rest? You bet your sweet bippy they wouldn’t. Crosees, surges, one-two’s, step-overs, flicks, tricks, back-heels. Ooh, everything. Campbell sent free down the right crossed, but Handyside stopped it with his hands, just outside the area. Barnard drilled the free kick across the face of the penalty box. The ball ricocheted around a bit and rolled out to the unmarked Jevons about 15 yards out in the middle. JEVONS calmly strode forward and threaded the ball through the blancmange of players with the outside of his left boot, into the bottom left corner. No Barnsley player seemed to move, they stood back and joined the fans in admiration of the white booted enigma. They too felt honoured to be in the presence of second division genius.

What’s the score now? In all this excitement I kinda lost count. Shall we ask Michael Boulding? Nope, he can’t count. A steady stream of Yorkists flowed from left to right, making for the exits. The police, jokers that they area, wouldn’t let them out. Too right, we Town fans have suffered worse fates. Frequently. All of which meant that these fair weather supporters stood around in a sleet storm. Cold, wet and thoroughly miserable. We had no sympathy for the red devils.

Cranered card


Parker42 mins
Hamilton45 mins
Young58 mins


Mark Halsey


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Perhaps they’ll stay a while longer, for here comes the fightback. A spell of pressure from Barnsley (ie two passes inside the Town half) and Rocastle skidded a shot across the face of goal from about 25 yards out on their left. Pettinger dived low and parried the ball aside. Nardiello scampered forward and was eventually strangled by a combination of Ford and Crane as he tried to dance along the bye-line and into the 6 yards box. That was the last Barnsley attack.

Town continued to toy with these lower league charlatans. Thorpe again drifted behind his marker at the back post, this time offside. Now that’s something we haven’t seen a Town striker do for 25 years - drifting away from his marker not being offside, of course. For about 10 minutes the Town players seemed to be signalling to the bench that some one was injured and eventually Ford hobbled off, replaced by Parker after 40 minutes. Nobody was sad to see the Space Cadet walk off, but he still got a warm ovation. Probably for being injured. Rankin, haven’t mentioned him much. Will do now. A minute after Ford went on a space walk Town put together a purringly perfect move. Barnsley attacked down their right under the Police Box. The ball was eased away from the fragile pretenders to the throne. Armstrong, Barnard, then Coldicot exchange one touch passing; Toblerone football. Coldicott clipped the ball to Rankin, on the touchline near the half way line, who chested the ball down with testosterone oozing from every pore. Isaiah turned and ran up the wing as Coldicott curled a pass for him to chase. Rankin powered on, pursued by a fading figure from the past. Handyside, poor Peter, sinking, sinking into the pitch, Rankin away. Along the bye-line Rankin turned, awaited the arrival of the former favourite, then simply stepped inside, leaving Handyside face down in the dirt. Into the area, Beresford shaking, RANKIN slapped the ball around the less-than-dapper flapper and in off the right hand post. A brilliant team goal with a great finish, followed by a blinding flash as a bridge was burnt a couple of yards from the Osmond Stand. Rankin raced up to the remaining raging Barnsley fans, turned his back, hopped up and down and with both hand raised pointed to the back of his shirt.

It began to snow.

There were three minutes of added time announced, but four on the board held up by the so called fourth official. Whatever, half time came, and more Barnsley fans went. Having been in the same position so, so many times this season the Town fans of course had so much empathy for the poor huddled masses in the Osmond End. Not. This was very reminiscent of Oldham all those three weeks ago. One team almost deliberately losing, it really was like they wanted Town to win even more that we did. As a team, Town were excellent, Daws and Coldicott controlled the middle, with Coldicott especially not allowing any Barnsleyite time to even attempt to control the ball. He was instantly upon their ankles, gnawing and gnarling his way through bone. Jevons carried his wand around, casting spells upon any of the little pixies who came near, enchanting the crowd with his swivelling hips and magical boots. Thorpe and Rankin were the air mobile, ready to attack at a moments notice. Handyside looked very, very ordinary as a result. We even saw the lesser spotted Campbell too, out from its winter hibernation.

Half time: Grimsby Town 4 Barnsley 0

This was all we could ever dream of and more. Everything was going perfectly, what could go wrong now? Oh, yes, it was snowing; it’d be just Town’s luck to have the game abandoned, wouldn’t it.

Stu's Half Time Toilet Talk

"It’s the result of a bizarre kindling incident".
"Has Handyside gone on the Galli-diet? ".
"What are the major the differences between San Francisco and Cleethorpes then?".
"I have no objection to trees in the countryside".
"Typical Town, we should be seven up"

The report continues in the Second Half.

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