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How worried are you about relegation?

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Grimsby's No. 1!

Grimsby v Crewe Preview

By: Alex Green
Date: 14/08/2009

WELL what a week it’s been, that new season optimism has been all but destroyed in just 180 minutes of measly football and after it had all started so well. Now Town have a chance to redeem themselves in front of their first home crowd of the season against newly relegated Crewe Alexandra.

Home > 2009-2010 Season > Previews > Crewe (h)

It’s been a long time since our path has crossed that of Crewe’s. Back in the good old days when mobiles were the size of a small country and Facebook was just a horrible hazing process involving dropping War and Peace on someone’s head. Back then Town and Crewe stood up for the little club both under the helm of two impressive managers playing attractive football and walloping the big boys, but time has caught up on us both and now us and The Alex go head to head for the opening day at Blundell Park.

I cornered some Crewe fans on a forum if that’s possible and asked them for their views on the upcoming tie.

The Opposition

Their History

Founded a year before ourselves in 1877 Crewe were established by those pesky cricketers looking for something to do in the winter. (If there was a little less football club founding and a little more middle order batting practice we might have already reclaimed The Ashes!) Named apparently after Princess Alexandra or after a pub depending on which rumour you wish to believe Crewe also along with ourselves helped establish the second tier of English football. Since then Crewe have followed a similar pattern to ourselves fighting the big boys and occasionally diving like a Russian submarine to the depth of the lower league.

"In the last 20 years we have progressed to the Championship in 1997 and spent 9 years out of ten in it, only one blip but we soon got promoted back. Since then in the last few years we have fallen from grace and have been sinking really fast at an alarming rate."

Last Season Was

Shite! So I have been told and who could correct such a great and well presented response. Crewe’s season was indeed shite finishing 22nd and 4 points off safety a run of 10 matches without a win in the very last frantic run in became their final and fatal downfall one in which consigned Crewe to League Two. Welcome and wipe your bloody feet!

This Season...

Though bookies and pundits are as equally optimistic of a return to League One it’s fans aren't expecting a ticker tape parade by May.

"Could be shite again!"
" looking equally dire!"

That’s the sort of optimism that would make any Town fan proud.

Your Biggest Hero Is...
"Seth Johnson (Turned down a move to Derby to help Crewe's cause but then moved during the summer)"

What Player Would You Happily Drive To Their Next Club..
"Well first off it would be playerS! and there are plenty of choices. Danny O'dire, Calvin 'the donkey' Zola and Anthony bloody Eldim are top at the moment."
"No one at the moment but I'm sure I could pick one out after a few games."

Thoughts On The Mariners..
"Small club on the coast in Cleethorpes small club like the Alex thought Grimsby would do well with Mike Newell at the helm."
"Followed a similar plight as us, spending several seasons struggling in the CCC and after dropped in to League 2 and have surprisingly struggled still. Squad doesn't look very good (although i could say the same about us!) and I think it’s going to be a hit and miss season for us both."

The Future Is...
"Ain’t looking too clever, with a 'hoofball' manager and a dodgy board. however, at the rate things are going we could soon be replacing our manager and maybe then we can start to move forward."
"So so....need to sort out problems on the pitch (hoofball) and the boardroom that is concerning a lot of supporters."

Most Famous Player To Wear The Shirt..

Competition for this is high at Crewe who under Dario Gradi produced a steady and constant stream of competent and skillful footballers including the likes of Danny Murphy, Seth Johnson and Dean Ashton; But the winner under Gradi’s stewardship and all time 1990 World Cup hero midfield maestro and Belgium Buster DAVID PLATT. Appearing 134 times and netting a brilliant total of 56 goals from the middle of the park before moving on to bigger and better things at Aston Villa in 1988.

Key Player

Clayton Donaldson. Born in Bradford in 1984 Clayton started his career on the north bank with them there Tahgers in 2002. During his three year spell in the rugby league city Clayton was sent out on loan on to an array of non league clubs all across Yorkshire starting with Harrogate Town then Scarborough and Halifax before finally returning to Harrogate Town. During his loan adventures Donaldson amassed 27 appearances and grabbing a total of 7 goals all of which were for Harrogate in his 2 spells at Wetherby Road. After being released by Peter Taylor from The KC it was another North Yorkshire club who were to hand him a deal in the guise of manager Billy McEwen at Conference club York City. His 2 year spell for the Minstermen was his most fruitful bagging him a near brilliant ratio of 1 per every other game (85 Apps, 41 Goals) Having turned down a new contract in 2006 it was time for the plague of The Mariners pre season to start snooping to sign the deadly striker. The beautiful and annoying figures of rotund Barry Fry and the Grimsby B Team, Scunthorpe United both failed to sign Donaldson who opted to move north of the border for a year at Hibs before joining Crewe in 2008 where his 6 goals in 38 appearances weren't enough to steer Crewe from relegation.

Recent Form

LTranmere (CC)(a)0-4
Currently 17th in League Two.
LBlackpool (CC)(h)1-2
Currently 16th in League Two.

Team News


  • Colgan may well be out for the match and Newell has drafted in Southampton stopper Tommy Forecast as a replacement.

  • 22-year-old Forecast has been drafted in for a month as cover for injured Colgan. Forecast's chances for first team action have been limited. After joining Spurs in 2003 Forecast helped them to a semi final FA Cup appearance including an impressive display at Anfield. In 2008 Forecast moved to Southampton for a figure estimated at £100,000 on a 5 year deal which was tied in with a pervious deal between Saints and Spurs for Welsh defender Gareth Bale. Forecast has made 6 appearances from the bench at St Mary’s and at 6ft6 is the tallest of the 3 keepers on the south coast. He has been touted as future England number one and is renowned as a good distributor of the ball and a fine shot stopper.

  • Jar man is already out with his broken foot while North picked up a knock from Matthew Bird in training and could be doubtful.

  • While Forbes is also out for around a month in an worryingly increasing injury list.
  • Team news to follow
  • Squads

    1GKNick Colgan
    2DFRobbie Stockdale
    3DFJoe Widdowson
    4DFRyan Bennett (captain)
    5DFMatthew Heywood
    6MFPeter Sweeney
    7MFAdrian Forbes
    8FWNathan Jar man
    9FWAdam Proudlock
    10FWBarry Conlon
    11MFDanny Boshell
    12DFJamie Clarke
    13MFNick Hegarty
    14MFPeter Bore
    15DFMatthew Bird
    16DFPaul Linwood
    17MFGrant Normington
    18FWChris Jones
    19MFMichael Leary
    25DFRobert Atkinson
    26FWJean-Louis Akpa Akpro
    27FWDanny North
    35GKLeigh Overton
    TBAGKTommy Forecast

    1 GK Steve Collis
    2 DF John Brayford
    3 DF Billy Jones (captain)
    4 MF Steven Schumacher
    5 DF Danny O'Donnell
    6 DF Patrick Ada
    8 FW Clayton Donaldson
    9 FW Anthony Elding (vice-captain)
    10 FW Calvin Zola
    11 MF Joel Grant
    12 DF Mat Mitchel-King
    13 GK Adam Legzdins
    14 FW Byron Moore
    15 FW Shaun Miller
    16 MF James Bailey
    17 DF Scott McManus
    18 MF Luke Murphy
    19 MF Ashley Westwood
    20 MF Danny Shelley
    23 DF Matt Tootle
    24 GK David Button (on loan from Tottenham Hotspur)
    25 MF Aman Verma (on loan from Leicester City)
    26 DF Harry Davis

    Head to Head

    Town have a decent record against Crewe, but have only won one out of the last ten games.

    P 56 W 23 D 15 L 18 F 79 A 66

    Crewe Head-to-Head (27th on The Opposition Ladder)

    Last Meeting

    Grimsby 0 Crewe 3 (Tue 21st Aug 2006)

    An embarrassing home defeat in the Carling Cup. Enough said.



    The Fishy Prediction

    Who says football is fickle? This game has already been touted as must win for Newell and his boys but whether that is true or just mindless frustration is open to debate. A win in front of the first home crowd of the season which may well be large due to the Telegraph offer would not be a bad thing.

    Grimsby 3-1 Crewe.

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