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Is That a Dagger I See Before Me?
By: Rob Sedgwick
POOR decision making in the final minutes of the FA Cup tie with Dagenham cost Grimsby an early FA Cup exit and some much-needed prize money. The Mariners had dominated the game and had looked the stronger side with extra time looming.
Morton dithered with the ball on the edge of his box and was caught in possession on 90 mins. The error was compounded in injury time when the Mariners gave away a penalty which was converted in what was effectively the last kick of the game.
It was harsh on Town who once again failed to score in open play.
Danny Preston, James Morton and Matt Green came into the side with Terry Taylor, Montel Gibson and Max Wright missing out.
Town went behind when some nice footwork from Wilson gave himself space in the box and he slotted past McKeown to put the non-league side ahead.
Town had had several shouts for a penalty but the referee finally awarded them one of the hour mark and Windsor made no mistake from 10 yards. Town looked increasingly dominant and with extra time looming one felt their extra fitness would be telling.
However, attempting to play out from the back with a few minutes left cost them dearly when Morton was dispossessed from a McKeown pass directly to him and Wilson was played in for a simple chance to win the game for Daggers. There were still a few minutes of injury time left so all hope was not lost, but a clumsy challenge in the box brought down Weston and Brundle scored the second penalty of the game to put the game beyond doubt, and it shortly finished 3-1 to the side bottom of the National League.
All sides make mistakes and concede goals. However Town's complete inability to score compounds the importance of these mistakes. Playing out from the back in the closing stages of a tight game, especially with an unfamiliar line-up (which is the norm under Holloway with virtually every game seeing major changes from earlier matches), is a dangerous game to play.
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