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The Goblet of Dire: Stockport Report

By: Tony Butcher
Date: 26/04/2004

A hot’n’bright afternoon in the Planet of the Baritone Women, with perhaps 1,000 Mariners marching up to the top of the hill, but not to the open terracing behind the goal.

Home > 2003-2004 Season > Reports > Stockport (a)

Edgeley Park

Stockport County 2 Grimsby Town 1
24 Apr 2004, Nationwide League Division 2

For reasons never fully explained Stockport didn’t open the area where seating was £15, but made the Town fans walk around the round to the £17 seats. Safety? Yes, must be, that’s why we walked along the length of the pitch past several blocks of Stockport supporters. Or perhaps they were mindful of government health warnings about melanoma. They wouldn’t want Town fans fainting in the mid-day sun, would they; that could cause crowd pandemonium that the police can’t control. They plonked us in the stand underneath, and to the right, of the TV gantry.

The Town players ambled about on the beach beforehand. Was that liniment or Ambre Solaire that they rubbed in to their collective things? Divots and clumps everywhere. Write your own punchline.

Town lined up in a 4-4-2 formation, as shown. In other words, the same starting XI as last week with just the Gallic gallimaufry, the French faux pas, replacing Soames on the subs bench.

Prior to the players running out, a bunch of balloons was released and a giant flag was walked around the pitch by schoolkids. The blistering, sibilant tannoy informed us that it was part of the campaign to "kick Grimsby out of Division Two", or something. Small children were crying, with blood coming out of their ears at every rasping, squawking syllable. You could probably have someone’s eye out with it too.

Stockport wore blue, were all off to the left and looked bigger than Town; Crane excepted, of course. Nothing very interesting at all about Mein Hosts. Daly’s hair was curling nicely at the ends, but generally they looked vaguely normal. They also did one of those group hugs before the kick-off.

When Stockport ran out a small boy was seen in a tree above the empty terrace, shaking the branches in excitement. He didn’t fall out, nor did any apples drop.

1st half

Town kicked off towards the populated stand with a long punting curler down the left for Mansaram to trot after. He trotted, the ball drifted out of play ten yards from the corner flag. Three seconds.

Stockport wellied long and high, Edwards headed, Crane watched and shouted a lot. Barnard waddled and the Town midfield did some amateur plane spotting. High above the streets and houses footballs flying high. The pitch definitely needs some basic crop rotation policies to be adopted. Dig deep with mulch and peat. Leave fallow for thirty months then plant some peas, it says in my medium sized book of gardening tips.

After three or four minutes Fettis drop kicked down the right, Anderson bounced above his marker and nodded the ball infield. Mansaram received the ball with his back to goal, about 35 yards out. He shielded the ball and, to the consternation of Town fans and Stockport defenders alike, did a perfectly weighted fashionable reverse pass for Campbell, who steamed through an inside right position. Campbell dribbled forward and his shot from the edge of the area riffled at a comfortable pace down the side netting for a corner.

Craneyellow card


Warhurst78 mins
Hocklessgoal66 mins


Kevin Wright


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The report continues in Part Two.

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