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Grimsby 2-0 Sheffield Wednesday

By: Richard Lord
Date: 21/12/2002

A spirited second half performance by Grimsby Town helped them earn their fifth win of the season over struggling Sheffield Wednesday this afternoon at Blundell Park.

What was hyped up as their most important game of the season, the Mariners pulled through to win 2-0 after back-to-back goals early in the second half.

Groves made changes to the side that lost so abysmally at Preston last Saturday by drafting in Ward at right back and pushing Ford in alongside Santos at the back.

Gallimore's midweek injury paved the way for Barnard to deputise, and Campbell returned to the side on the left of midfield with Oster on the right.

Coldicott recovered from injury to play alongside Pouton in the centre of midfield, and Livingstone also made the starting eleven, paired with Mansaram up front.

The visitors created the best of the very few first half chances, but neither keeper was forced into making a serious save. Livingstone was booked for a heavy challenge but incidents were few and far between.

Wednesday were strong in the air but Santos and Ford did well to keep Kuqi and Sibon at bay.

There were periods when Town could not get out of their own half, and the game petered out to a 0-0 scoreline at half time.

Grimsby broke the deadlock on 49 minutes through the head of Georges Santos. Barnard's corner drifted to the far post where the Frenchman rose unchallenged to nod home via the far post.

Almost straight from the kick off the Owls could have drawn level but Kuqi dragged his shot wide of the post.

Grimsby doubled their lead following a well-crafted goal involving Pouton and Oster.

Oster, who had continued his run down the line, latched onto a perfectly weighted defence-splitting pass and the loan star pulled the ball back for Mansaram to bundle the ball home from close range.

Derek Geary was booked after sliding in on Campbell near the corner flag, and a desperate Wednesday nearly went three goals down when Santos headed against the bar.

Coyne was forced into a smart save when Kuqi got ahead of his marker, and Sibon had a great chance to pull a goal back but miss-timed his header when free on the edge of the six yard box.

All in all the Mariners deserved the win but the first half appeared to be the showing of two of the poorer teams in the division.

However, it was Grimsby who managed to raise their game and graft out a well-earned 2-0 victory.

With Brighton losing last night, Bradford losing this afternoon and Stoke drawing at Wimbledon, and with Grimsby travelling to Derby on Boxing Day, it was vital that the Mariners picked up the maximum three points.

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