The Grimsby Town FC


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18Cambridge Utd14-516
19Leyton Orient14-215

24Newport County12-87

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Matt Westcott

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 18/06/2000

Cod Head Matt Westcott

The following is an interview of Matt Westcott undertaken by The Fishy.

When did you first start supporting the Mariners, and what was your first game?

When I was about five. This is rather sad, but I honestly cant remember my first game. The first memories I have are of standing in the Barrett Stand and watching the likes of Ford and Brolly and Cumming. I remember when I was very young being cuffed by my dad for making monkey noises at no one in particular but just cos someone near me had done it - not very pc and I didn't do it again, specially as I my dad pointed our pertinently that we had Tony Ford in the squad.

Who is the best player you ever saw wearing a Grimsby Town shirt?

Bobby Cumming. The most committed player I've ever seen wear the famous black and white stripes. If he'd have been playing for any other team I might have hated him, but he was a complete bloody hero to me. I remember being told that when someone had hacked him down or any other Town player he'd run up to them make a note of their number and make sure he got them back before the game was out. I'm not sure how true that is but it makes for a good image.

If there is one game you were allowed to go back in time and watch what would it be and why?

Town v Wolves at Old Trafford. So I could say to all the red scum that inhabit my office that I was part of the biggest crowd ever to grace Old Trafford. By the way a bloke with the same name as my dad, Dennis Westcott, netted a hat-trick against us.

What are your favourite and least favourite away grounds?

My favourite ground is Leicester. Strange you might think, especially as me and my mate Howard always seem to get attacked there. But I just love how close you are to the pitch there. We always try and sit in the front row along the side which means you are almost at eye-level to the grass. The last time we went we had to hide out in MacDonalds for an hour or so after being chased from a pub very close to the ground. I was the only one who went to the game in a Town shirt but we decided wisely that I should cover up if we were going to go drinking. Unfortunately the only jumper I had was black, white and red in nature and bore the insignia of the Super Stripeys. Not a good move as we were to find out. Luckily we had our trainers on.

My least favourite ground has to be Barnsley. Over-priced tickets, cramped stands with little or no view, stewards that make the Gestapo look like Sunday School teachers, coppers that stand idly by as you get into a ruck with a load of inbred hedge-monkeys and to top it all off it's in Yorkshire.

What, in your opinion, are GTFC's best and worst seasons since you have been supporting them?

Best season would have to be the Wembley one for obvious reasons. Though the championship season that culminated in the final day win against Exeter was memorable.
The worst would have to be end of Brian Laws' tenure.

What is the most eventful day you have ever had in the course of following the Mariners?

QPR away in the cup some years ago would have to be at or near the top of the most eventful list. I cant remember too much about the game, all the memories are based on what happened outside. After the match we headed for the fleshpots of London but as we made our way to where we thought the Tube station was me and my mate Howard could hear a very large crowd stomping towards us hollering what we took to be anti-Grimsby obscenities. Now we aren't runners by any stretch of the imagination but we seemed to be vastly outnumbered so we took to our heels. But after a couple of minutes of frantic legging it we turned round to see no one in sight.
We went back to find that what we thought was a gang of mindless hooligans was in fact the junior branch of the Territorial Army practicing their drill in a nearby barracks. Somewhat relaxed now we continued on our way to Soho - and before you say anything we were young, naive and it was our first time in That London. On arrival the first person we saw was a Town fan we commonly referred to as Graham Taylor as he looked uncannily like the Turnip bonce. He was exiting an "Adult shop" with a large brown paper bag under his arm and I don't think it contained the latest copy of SWWF.
After enjoying our fill of said district we decided to head back to Kings Cross but we'd obviously been enjoying ourselves too much as we'd gone and missed the last train. Kings Cross is not the best place to hang about and wait for the milk train and we were propositioned on a number of occasions by laydees of the night. This was in the days before I became a gentleman of the world and so when asked by a particularly rough looking piece I replied with the now immortal phrase " Sorry love we're only here for the football."
We decided to kip on a bench next to the platform after that encounter only to be woken up by a copper who demanded to know our names and addresses. Being fine upstanding gentlemen we refused and asked why he wanted such information to which he replied: "I've had word that two lads matching your description have travelled down from Grimsby looking for bother." Yeah right. Now I know Town have a reputation but I didn't realise that me and H had been part of some undercover surveillance operation. We did finally make it home about 8am the following day. Just another journey in the history of a Town fan.

Who is the greatest ever GTFC manager?

Sadly Bucko would have to go down as the greatest manager in terms of achievements but personally I preferred George Kerr, plus he always used to give me a good tip at Christmas for delivering his papers. I never got one off Arthur Mann, God rest his soul, who was also on my round.

How many games a season do you get to now, and what do you do while Town are playing games that you can't get to?

I don't get to as many as I would like as I'm deputy sports editor on a paper in the North East covering Newcastle, Sunderland and Boro, but I do try and get to as many home games as possible and all the games in the north west. When I'm not watching Town I usually log on to the web site.

Name your all-time starting eleven since you have been watching Town?

Aidan Davison
Bob Cumming,
Super Clive
(The system might not work and some people might have to get used to playing with the other foot but they'd be bloody good to watch)

Do your children support the Mariners?

I haven't got any yet but they will

Matt Westcott

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