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Ellison Spanner in the Works

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 31/07/2001

GRIMSBY Manager Lennie Lawrence has been dealt a blow for the start of the new season with the news that Leicester City winger Kevin Ellison, who he still wants to bring in on a season long loan, will not be fit to take part in Town's first game on August 11th against Crewe.

This will be yet a further problem on the former Luton manager's mind when it comes to selecting his side to face the Railwaymen in the season's curtain raiser. With a central defender top of his shopping list, and the news that Steve Livingstone could be missing for the opener, the last thing Lawrence wanted was to re-shuffle his settled midfield around.

22-year-old Ellison did not feature in any of Towns game's whilst over in Scandinavia, and was sent back to Filbert Street to regain his fitness, but now he can't make the big match in ten days time, Lawrence has had to think again over his starting eleven, with Ellison's loan move still not even a formality.

"What's knocked us back completely is that he didn't play over there. If he's fit, but not match fit, I would still loan him. I would still take a chance" Lawrence told the Evening Telegraph. "Even if he came now he would be behind. They still haven't categorically said they'll do it".

Lawrence has already conceded that Stuart Campbell will once again fit in down the left flank, with Alan Pouton going down the right. This leaves Menno Willems, Wayne Burnett, Danny Butterfield and Stacy Coldicott to contest for the two central midfield berths.

However, it seems that Lawrence has made up his mind when he told the Telegraph that it will probably be "as you were against St Mirren", with Danny Butterfield and Stacy Coldicott in the centre. But with friendly fixtures still left, there is still time for the fringe players to convince Towns manager that they should be wearing the black and white shirt on August 11th.

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