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The Opposition View: Darlington

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 16/08/2005

WITH just a few days to go before Grimsby's third game of the season - when the Mariners take on Darlington at Blundell Park - Rob Sedgwick caught up Quakers fan Scott Thornberry to see what the opposition's view of the game was and how their season had gone so far.

You have one won, drawn one and lost one so far. Does this seem about right?

It basically sums up all that was wrong with us last season. We look good for a couple of games a then wallop, absolute garbage the next (Orient).

What have been the main changes to your squad over the summer?

We have got rid of a lot of fringe players who really were just hangers on and never likely to do anything in league football. We also got shot of Alun Armstrong and Craig Hignett.

Do you think your squad is stronger or weaker than last season?

It's hard to tell so early on in the season. Early indications show that yes we have made improvements, but the centre of midfield is a real weak area and until that is sorted we will struggle in most games.

What players should we look out for?

Sam RussellA lot of our good players are in defence, which doesn't bode to well for us. Our keeper (Sam Russell, left) is superb as is Joey Hutchinson who is a centre half. We have a new winger called Carlos Logan and he can be a bit of a handful and if he scores he does a Lomana Lua Lua style celebration which is cool.

What kind of away following should we expect?

I would guess around 400. After Saturday's performance you will only get the die hard fans travelling.

Dave HodgsonIs your manager David Hodgson (left) well regarded by the Darlo faithful?

He is a love him/hate him character. There seem to be more doubters coming out and if we are not successful this season I doubt he will stay.

What lessons can you learn from last season?

To not be inconsistent and play well in every game. Treat every team with the same respect. That will stop us from actually beating high placed teams and then the next game losing against bottom of the table ones.

Who are your biggest rivals in this division?

Carlisle United I guess. We are stuck out on a limb up here and Carlisle are the ones we will regard as rivals, although really we couldn't give a toss about them.

Other than Darlo and Grimsby, who do you expect to do well this season?

Well I expect Northampton to do well but Boston United to be the big surprise package. They seem to have splashed the cash this summer and the players they have brought in should be a big advantage. Although saying that, as we found out at Darlo last season, names count for nothing in this division, sometimes it's all about battling.

Do you have any pre-conceptions about Grimsby?

Fish smell is all that comes to mind at the moment.

Do you especially remember any previous games between the two clubs?

I remember last season we beat you on the opening game of the season at Darlo. How we did I will never know as our team, looking back, was very poor.

Finally, a scoreline prediction?


Thanks to Scott Thornberry of Darlo Uncovered for the interview.

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