The Fishy - Grimsby Town FC

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Conlon: Returns?

Grimsby v Accrington Preview

By: Sam Kinnaird
Date: 29/10/2009

GRIMSBY return to Blundell Park after losing five consecutive league games and dropping into the bottom two. Caretaker boss Neil Woods faces his first home game in charge.


Who are they?...Exactly! Well, Accrington were re-founded in 1968, two years after going bust. In the years that followed Stanley slowly climbed their way back up the football ladder and finally won promotion in 2006 under manager John Coleman. They swapped places with relegated Oxford United, who ironically were the team that replaced them when they were relegated out of the league in 1962. With precious little money John Coleman added wisely to his squad and they finished 20th in League Two in their first season back in the League, the highlight of which was a League Cup win over former European Champions Nottingham Forest. The two seasons since saw improving league finishes of 17th and 16th. This season Accrington have been blighted by off-field problems involving their finances, and were recently given eight weeks to pay a £300,000 tax bill. Manager Coleman said: "The players' achievements seem to have gone under the radar. They've rolled their sleeves up and shown the right attitude. I think that's what should make the headlines." Stanley currently sit in 14th place in League Two, nine places and nice points above the Mariners.

Famous Players

Brett Ormerod - The former Southampton and Preston striker began his career with Stanley in 1995 at the tender age of 18. He was originally on the books of home town club Blackburn before being released and spotted by then-Accrington manager Eric Whalley. Ormerod scored 32 league goals in 54 appearances for the club, whilst working in a cotton mill to earn a living. Sam Allardyce then paid £50,000 for the frontman in 1997; he went on to score 46 goals in 128 games before moving on to Southampton. Whilst at St. Mary’s he was less prolific, but managed to score and make an assist in the 2-1 FA Cup semi-final win over Watford before playing the full 90 minutes in the 1-0 final defeat against Arsenal. Ormerod was then signed by Preston in 2006 before returning to Blackpool in the summer of this year.

What a game!

Accrington were the visitors to Blundell Park for Alan Buckley’s first home league game in 2006. Loan signings Anthony Pulis, Peter Till and Martin Paterson were thrust into first team action despite signing only days before. It was that man Paterson who opened the scoring on 12 minutes after a fine team move involving Gary Croft and Gary Jones. Jones then curled home the second shortly after the break to give the Mariners a much needed three points in front of over 4,500 fans.

Key Man - Michael Symes

Frontman Symes has represented eight different clubs in his career, despite being only 25. He signed for Accrington in the summer after a successful loan spell last season from Shrewsbury. He began the season in fine form scoring against QPR in the League Cup before netting against old club Shrewsbury a week later. As Accrington’s form improved, so did Symes’ as he netted two against another former club Crewe Alexandra before scoring last week in a surprise win at Rochdale. The striker scored the winner when Accrington beat Town 1-0 at Blundell Park last season, and will be keen to add to his impressive goal record so far this season.

Recent Record

In the six games the Mariners have played against Accrington in League Two in recent times, Stanley lead the way with five wins to Town’s one. Successive 4-1 thrashings at the Crown Ground as well as three wins since have seen Accrington become something of a bogey side for Town. Overall however, the record looks much better. Town have won 17 of the 28 games the sides have played against each other, losing 11. Interestingly there has never been a draw between the sides.

Team News

  • Grimsby have brought a premature end to the loan spells of Derby midfielder Arnaud Mendy and Cardiff striker Josh Megginis. "They are not going to get into the 18 and I don't think it's fair to keep them here. They both understand the situation," said Town boss Neil Woods.
  • Striker Barry Conlon returns from a four match ban.
  • Another loanee Olly Lancashire is expected to keep his place in central defence.
  • On-loan 'keeper Alan Martin has been recalled by parent club Leeds so Ian Dunbavin will continue in goal for Accrington.
  • John Mullin (ankle), Leam Richardson (groin) and Chris King (knee) will all miss out through injury.


    Mariners 2-0 Accrington - Town will be buoyed by their second half performance at Bournemouth last week, and the Woods factor might just be enough to secure three vital points.

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