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Town 0 Wolves 1 - Mini Report
By: Paul Holmes
TOWN's hopes of survival took a massive blow in the disappointing defeat to Wolves on Tuesday evening. Town remain three points behind Brighton, with a much worse goal difference, but now having played the same number of games.
Despite the plea of the fans, Paul Groves stuck with the 4-5-1 system that has left Town desperately isolated up front in recent games. Groves kept the same starting eleven as the Leicester game, meaning Georges Santos recovered from a broken nose/sore groin whilst Michael Boulding still sat on the bench.
Town started the brighter with the midfield quartet of Keane, Hughes, Bolder and Campbell pushing forward to support the lone Mansaram. Hughes' fired a steady effort goalwards in the first few moments but Murray's goal was never in danger.
On the ten minute mark Town had a penalty claim turned down. Murray miscontroled a backpass with Campbell closing him down. The young 'keeper stretched to clear the ball but missed and took out Campbell instead. Referee Eddie Wolstenholme waved away the Town protests despite Murray's failure to even connect with the ball.
Two minutes later and Town fell behind. A mix up between defence and midfield gave Kenny Miller the time he need to play through a perfect ball for Nathan Blake, the Welsh international ran on before firing low underneath Coyne's body and into the net.
Town's game plan of possession and getting a scrappy winner was up in smoke. Campbell and later Keane were pushed forward into more advanced roles to support Mansaram.
Still Town had the better of the play and the possession, but still chances never came. Hughes again was the only player to have a chance of note, his effort flying wide. On several occasions Town threatened to break down Wolves defence but never delivered. Dave Jones' men appeared happy to soak up pressure and counterattack.
The second half was no better, Mansaram tired and the fans called for Michael Boulding. After 60 odd minutes they got him. Off came Chris Bolder, who had played reasonably well, Boulding went up front in a 4-4-2 system.
Boulding's pace created limited problems, mainly for the linesman who didn't seem to understand the offside rule. His constant flagging of Boulding was annoying both the players and fans.
Darren Mansaram had his chance to give Town the lead after excellent wing play by Keane, but his header glanced well wide.
Wolves' attack was still dangerous and Coyne had to produce a full length save to deny Blake's ambitious effort.
As the clock wore down Boulding escaped the linesman flag before twisting and turning into the box, the defender dragged his arm back but he still wriggled away. His low cross was met by a queue of Town players, neither managed to fire past the Wolves wall of bodies. After the ball trickled away the penalty appeals came.
Livingstone was brought on for Keane in an attempt to salvage a point, the move proved unpopular with Keane looking most likely to create anything and most fans calling for Groves to take himself off.
Overall a very disappointing evening for Town in a game that they simply had to win.
Grimsby: Coyne, McDermott, Ford, Santos, Gallimore, Campbell, Bolder, Groves, Richard Hughes, Keane, Mansaram
. Subs: Allaway, Livingstone, Chettle, Boulding, Cooke.
Wolverhampton: Murray, Irwin, Lescott, Butler, Naylor, Ndah, Cameron, Ince, Kennedy, Miller, Blake.
Subs: Oakes, Rae, Sturridge, Edworthy, Cooper.
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