The Grimsby Town FC


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Town 1 Wycombe 3

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 19/11/2005

GRIMSBY'S unbeaten away run finally cane to an end this afternoon in an action-packed encounter at high-flying Wycombe. In a feast of attacking football, the two teams created an enormous number of chances at both ends, but it was Wycombe who edged it and they finished worthy 3-1 winners.

Russell Slade picked the same side who beaten Macclesfield last week at Blundell Park meaning JPK Kalala had to settle for a place on the bench after returning from international duty during which Ciaran Toner had deputised so well in his absence.

Both sides had early chances to go in front. Griffin volleyed the ball wide from a pinpoint cross after 10 minutes and an instinctive shot from Tommy Mooney went just wide shortly after.

At the other end a Macca cross on the break found the head of Gary Jones but his effort could only shave the top of the crossbar.

Wycombe got their noses in front when poor defending saw Town fail to clear the ball out of their own box, and it eventually ricocheted to Griffin in the six yard box who poked it into the net.

Town almost drew level when Reddy got his foot to the ball with the 'keeper beaten. As the ball headed goalwards the Town fans began to celebrate but his shot lacked pace which allowed a Wycombe defender to get back and clear it off the line.

Town continued to create chances but it was the Chairboys who next drew blood. The impressive Betsy got past Newey and was allowed to deliver a perfect cross for Bloomfield to hammer the ball home.

The writing looked on the wall and the first "Sort it Slade" style grumblings has just begun to be vocalised when Town suddenly pulled a goal back. Reddy seized upon a loose ball in the Wycombe box and scored from close range to make it 2-1.

That was the last meaningful action of an exhilarating first half

Half Time: Wycombe 2 Town 1

After a quiet first fifteen minutes of the second period the action began again in earnest. Town went close with a Newey free kick and a Parky snatched shot went just wide.

With the game delicately poised substitute Gritton almost scored with his first touch but his shot went agonisingly wide after the Wycombe keeper had gone "walkies" and ended up stranded.

Wycombe continued to look dangerous and Mildenhall did well to make a low save from a corner.

The decisive moment came around the 75 minute mark. Newey was booked for an innocuous foul in Wycombe's half and then almost immediately the same player brought down Betsy on the edge of the box. The 500-strong away contingent breathed a collective sigh of relief as the former Cambridge man, who will probably be suspended in the next game for the booking, escaped with just a talking to from the referee.

The resulting free kick however was launched into the Town box (which is a much more vulnerable place in the air without Rob Jones) at pace and defender Roger Johnson bulleted a header past Mildenhall.

Wycombe almost made it four with a near replica of the third goal but this time the header went just wide of the post.

Town failed to climb the mountain that was the last 10 minutes.

Although neither defence was convincing, Town were not disgraced and were still in the game until the final few minutes. Wycombe are undoubtedly the best side in the division (even without Nathan Tyson), but Town have now played them twice and are still in a promotion place

Next weekend Grimsby face another tough trip to Oxford who snatched a point at Blundell Park with a late goal in the opening game of the season.

Full Time: Wycombe 3 Town 1

MOTM: Paul Bolland. Covered an immense amount of ground and made several telling tackles and promising forward runs.

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