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What is more important, result or style of football?

Style of Football


Bums On Seats

By: Todd Bontoft
Date: 19/02/2001

If I knew the current position of Grimsby Town's finances, I doubt that it would fill me with a warm glow. The chances are what with the continuing poor attendance at home games, the balance sheet will be way into the red.

To some extent ignorance is bliss but it's important that the fans and the wider community of North East Lincolnshire are as informed as possible about the state of affairs at Blundell Park. Clearly, so far this season, for our size and spending ability we have just about managed to hold our own and when the least favourite month of February is out of the way we will all have a clearer idea of how our trench war against relegation is going.

Survival this season, with the expected increase in TV money and a new stadium on the horizon must surely make survival even more necessary that would normally be the case.

Yes, I know, it is always crucial to avoid the drop and it is disaster if relegated, but you get my point. Following relegation there would be a different approach to the summer job of rebuilding and strengthening the squad, and doubts would emerge about the long-term necessity for a new all-seated stadium. "We don't need a 20,000plus stadium for a Division Two Team!" "Spend it on players to get us back up!" or even "We are on the slide, don't bother let's stay at Blundell Park!"

One can only hope that the powers-that-be at Blundell Park continue to manage the books in the best possible way. Lennie and the lads secure the points and we can look forward to a rosier summer. Unless we somehow stumble upon our own Sugar Daddy to 'splash the cash' at the manager's whim, the board, shareholders and the population of North East Lincolnshire are the only sources of income, with the latter holding the most potential.

Like everyone else, I wish I could suggest some sure-fire ways of doubling Town's home attendance, or at least filling the place, as with our limited capacity doubling is impossible. But apart from suggesting a permanently winning team - hardly original or easy to achieve - there does not seem to be a great deal to enthuse the stay at home supporters. I know we took quite a few to Wembley, but where are they now?

So why am I getting so crotchety after watching a successful three points at home to Burnley? Well maybe because we beat a team with far greater resources, with an excellent away following, and yet we still have those that insist in supplying the moans and the groans. Before we can realistically get the 'stay aways' to come back into the fold those of us that do religiously follow the Mariners must start to see the cup as 'half full' and not 'half empty'. I include myself in this piece of chastisement.

Perhaps only then will the 'stay aways' begin to understand what they are missing and that they are taking for granted something that many Town's around England would give almost anything to have. We not only have a professional football league side but also an established First Division side to boot! Established?

Well no one could really deny that we are firmly established as part of the furniture of the First Division. I always raise a smile when something along the lines of 'no disrespect to the likes of Grimsby' but it is not the same as playing at Moan Utd' dribbles out of the mouth of a manager or chairman whose team has been relegated from the Premier League. Ha Ha Ha!.

The article continues in Part Two

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