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Lawrence on Barnsley

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 04/03/2001

Grimsby manager Lennie Lawrence praised the opposition after Saturday's 2-0 defeat against Barnsley, telling Radio Humberside: "That's the best team performance against us at home for a little while."

"In fairness to Barnsley their game plan was good. They were distinctly better than us as at both ends. I don't think they outplayed us - in fact we had large amounts of possession as we usually do, and we made some reasonable chances in the first half."

"It it was to be a result today other than a draw, they needed to convert one or two of those. We had a great heading opportunity from a McDermott cross in the first half and if one or two people had done what they were supposed to do on corners, we certainly would have picked up a goal from a second ball. They turned out to be our best opportunities which were spurned, and of course once Barnsley got the first goal then it was always going to be a very difficult afternoon. " said the Grimsby boss, adding "I can't recall a clear-cut chance in the second half".

Lawrence acknowledged the strength of the opposition as well as the Mariners obvious weak spot up front, saying: "They defended resolutely. They were well organised at the back and obviously we're lightweight at the front, which we knew. Dyer and Shipperley were a real handful. Looking at Barnsley's performance, not their play between the boxes, but looking how dangerous they were at one end, and how resolute they were at the other, a draw would have been a good result for us today.

"The biggest disappointment of all was the nature of the second goal which put the game beyond us. It's a free kick, we won the header, we stand and watch while they have a shot which was saved (good save), then we stand and watch while Dyer puts the rebound in. That's the biggest disappointment - at 1-0 you've always got chance a chance, but two - that's a bit of a mountain for us to climb really."

Speaking of the seemingly endless search for a new striker a frustrated Lawrence said: "I'm trying, I must have contacted every Premier League club. It's very difficult when you've got no money and a lot of people don't want to come. A lot of people are facing a lot of games and they don't want let their players out, and sometimes you can't manage the wages. I've done it once, I've brought five loan players in and Campbell's been here all the year - it's a hard thing to do.

"You can't keep coming up with it, you can't keep producing them out of the hat. We're trying and we're hopeful that we can do something soon. It isn't easy to say the least. You're not going to get a Shipperley or a Dyer on loan, you've got no chance - they're million pound players."

Lawrence has to prepare his side for Tuesday's trip away at Huddersfield, a game which the Grimsby manager described as "massive".

"When I look at Barnsley's strengths I'm disappointed that we've lost. It's not the end of the world. We'd have had to have been at our very best today to get a result, at both ends, and we weren't. Now we have to look forward to Huddersfield, that's gone now."

"It's looking to me like it's 6 or 7 at the bottom and 3 are going. Obviously we're in there and we need to make sure that we're out of the bottom three after next Tuesday and after next Saturday." concluded Lawrence.

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