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Wycombe Preview

By: Richard Lord
Date: 06/10/2005

GRIMSBY Town face a stern test on Friday night as they come up against Wycombe Wanderers at Blundell Park. The visitors know that a win will put them top of the league but it also gives the Mariners a chance to extend their lead over the promotion-chasing pack.

Home > 2005-2006 Season > Previews > Wycombe (h)

Wycombe look to be serious promotion contenders after an impressive start to the season. September's Manager of the Month John Gorman has got his side organised and they have been performing well recently, winning three of their last four league games. However, four straight draws earlier in the season means they've been chasing Town for that top spot. Their squad is strong and they should last the test of time and be pushing for automatic promotion at the end of the season.

The Opposition

Manager John Gorman was in charge of Swindon Town back in 1993 when they enjoyed a season in the Premiership but were immediately relegated after conceding 100 goals. Now he's working hard to move Wycombe back up the league ladder, and they have rebuilt the squad since being relegated alongside the Mariners 18 months ago. After hoping for a quick return to League 1 last season, the Wanderers missed out on a play-off spot by seven points but they look better equipped this time around.

Their Squad
Former Newcastle midfielder Rob Lee is possibly the most recognised name on Wycombe's books. He joined the club in March and has been a regular this season. In a week when John McDermott celebrated his second testimonial, Wanderers have their own loyal player in Keith Ryan - he's been performing for the Blues since 1989. Town fans will remember Stefan Oakes (left); the midfielder scored three impressive long range goals against the Mariners last season for Notts County. Defender Clint Easton has experience with Watford and Norwich, while Tommy Mooney is at his eleventh club of his illustrious career.

Key Player
Nathan Tyson (left). Although Tommy Mooney holds an amazing record against the Mariners, Nathan Tyson, should he play, will be the one to watch. He's notched an incredible 13 goals already this term and has been the subject of transfer speculation. The 23-year-old started his career at Reading and, after several loan spells at various clubs - including Wycombe - he eventually signed at Adam's Park on a permanent basis last summer. Tall, strong and plenty of pace, Town's mean defence will have their hands full on Friday night - that's if he plays! Otherwise it's best to keep both eyes on Mooney.

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Team News



  • Congolese midfielder Jean-Paul Kalala is away on international duty in Cape Town with DR Congo. Ciaran Toner is likely to replace him in central midfield.

  • Striker Gary Jones is still battling for full match fitness fitness following the ankle injury he sustained during the win against Spurs. Therefore Martin Gritton will almost certainly start again.

  • Gary Croft is still doubtful with a knee injury, and is likely to have to start on the bench again, as he did at Shrewsbury.

  • Andy Parkinson is fit again after missing the Shrewsbury game with a persistent shin splints problem.
  • Wycombe's top-scorer Nathan Tyson is struggling with a calf injury and rated extremely doubtful. Kevin Betsy stands by to replace the leading scorer in English football up front alongside Mooney.

  • Wycombe have signed Preston North End keeper Andy Lonergan on a month's loan. The 21-year-old has been out of the game for eight months with a cruciate ligament injury, but is expected to start for the Chairboys.

  • Veteran midfielder Rob Lee is still out with an Achilles injury.

  • Long-term absentees Keith Ryan, Will Antwi, Mark Philo and Charlie Griffin will also all be absent.
  • Probable Teams


    1Steve Mildenhall
    2John McDermott
    3Tom Newey
    4Rob Jones
    6Justin Whittle
    28Simon Francis
    18Ciaran Toner
    8Paul Bolland
    11Andy Parkinson
    10Martin Gritton
    9Michael Reddy
    TBAAndy Lonergan
    2Danny Senda
    3Clint Easton
    5Roger Johnson
    6Michael Williamson
    8Joe Burnell
    10Matt Bloomfield
    4Stefan Oakes
    22Sergio Torres
    16Tommy Mooney
    7Kevin Betsy



    14Terry Barwick
    20Gary Croft
    4Simon Ramsden
    15Gary Cohen
    19Gary Jones
    11Ian Stonebridge
    18Jonathan Dixon
    9Nathan Tyson
    21Steve Williams
    12Martin Russell

    Head to Head

    Town have only recorded one win in their eight encounters with Wycombe since the two sides first met in 1997. The first three meetings were all draws, but the first win went to Wycombe when they defeated the Mariners 3-1 at Blundell Park in the third round of the FA Cup. The Chairboys went on to play Liverpool in the semi finals of the competition that season. The first league victory went to Grimsby when they reversed the 3-1 result at Blundell Park. Later that season the Mariners slumped to a 4-1 defeat at Adam's Park, the game that most fans believed was when Paul Groves should've departed the club.

    P 8 W 1 D 4 L 3 F 7 A 12

    Wycombe Head-to-Head (90th on The Opposition Ladder)


  • Iffy Onoura (left) played for both Wycombe and Town in 2003-2004. Onoura played 6 games under Lawrie Sanchez for Wycombe at the start of that season, but just a week later then signed for Town after Wycombe decided not to retain him. He went on to make 18 appearances for the Mariners, scoring three goals

  • Last Meeting

    It was a dull 0-0 encounter back in April at Blundell Park. Not much more to add.

    Grimsby Team: Williams, Whittle, Forbes, Robert Jones, McDermott, Fleming (Pinault, 72), Crowe, Coldicott, Ramsden (Bull, 73), Gritton, Parkinson
    Subs (not used): Crane,Downey,Hegarty

    Wycombe Team: Talia, Senda, Williamson, Johnson, Burnell, Uhlenbeek (Dixon, 84), Lee, Bloomfield, Stonebridge (Philo, 74), Claridge, Tyson
    Subs: (not used) Cronin,Martin,Nethercott

    Attendance: 3,452    Report


    The division's best defence comes up against the division's best attack, and something has to give. However, Wycombe are vulnerable at the back as they've conceded 18 goals this season (compare that to Grimsby's eight) - 14 in their last four games, although over half of them were against Aston Villa in the League Cup. There are goals wherever Wycombe are involved so I'm going for a 2-2 draw.


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