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Grimsby 2 Millwall 2

By: Richard Lord
Date: 17/11/2001

GRIMSBY TOWN were denied victory in the 94th minute of the match when Millwall equalised for the second time in a very entertaining game. The visitors entered the game on very good form and had the chances to win it .

Poor finishing let them down and they were punished for their wayward finishing by the Mariners, to a certain point.

The first half proved to be goal-less but nevertheless it saw a host of chances arise for both teams, but it was the Lions who looked the more dangerous. Paul Ifill was a constant threat on the right and the front pairing of Claridge and Sadlier tested Groves and Broomes to their limit.

Rowan, who had come in to replace Jevons, was very quiet whereas Chapman, who replaced Gallimore, was proving to be a more than adequate replacement at left back. Allen created one or two half chances for himself but they could have been behind at the time when Sadlier performed the miss of the season. With the open goal gaping one yard in front of him he somehow managed to totally miss the ball altogether. Tim Cahill's runs from midfield were not being picked up and he had a great headed chance but it went straight at Coyne.

Millwall piled on the pressure but the Mariners gradually came into the game as the half wore on. Grimsby did look stretched at the back but managed to cope well. The sides finished the half on level terms before coming out for a thriller of a second half.

Again Millwall created the chances and Claridge had another great chance but failed to convert. Then the breakthrough came when Boulding stormed down the full length of the pitch before unleashing a drive which was parried away by Warner. Campbell picked up the lose ball out wide and crossed it to the far post where Rowan, at an acute angle, hit it into Sean Dyche on the line before hitting the back of the net.

Grimsby held out through another spell of pressure but the Lions finally scored the equaliser they deserved. Three green shirts were up against one black and white before Sadlier's scuffed shot dribbled into the corner of the net.

That came 15 minutes from the end but Michael Boulding looked to have won it for the home side when he drilled in Butterfield's volleyed cross after a great move following a free kick. Two minutes before the end and five minutes of injury time were signalled due to the linesman's injury early in the second half.

Claridge finally got his goal in the fourth minute of the five added on when a hopeful ball was looped into the area and a scramble saw Claridge stick out a boot and poke home from close range. It was a bitter blow for Grimsby, although the warning signs were there when the visitors had a goal disallowed just two minutes prior to the legitimate goal.

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