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Fri 31/03
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Grimsby 1-3 Wrexham

By: Richard Lord
Date: 20/01/2004

A dismal performance on an equally dismal night saw Grimsby Town slump to their third defeat in four games against Wrexham at Blundell Park this evening.

Two first half goals set the visitors on their way, and the victory was assured just after the hour when former Spurs striker Chris Armstrong netted a third.

The Mariners rallied towards the end and Phil Jevons collected what is genuinely described as a consolation goal from a Darren Mansaram cross.

Manager Paul Groves dropped himself from the side that lost 5-1 at Port Vale on Saturday. Jason Crowe moved into midfield with Greg Young filling in at left back.

Iffy Onuora was also preferred to Mansaram to partner the returning 13-goal striker Mick Boulding.

The opening ten minutes was a timid affair, before the Welshmen began to stamp their authority on the game.

They broke the deadlock after 18 minutes when former Norwich City striker Chris Llewellyn headed home unchallenged from 12 yards out.

The lead was doubled six minutes later when Thomas was allowed too much room on the edge of the Town box, and found Davison's right corner.

Town created very little in the first half, but Iain Anderson saw his 30-yard free kick whistle past Andy Dibble's left-hand post.

Onuora had put the experienced keeper under pressure from a swirling Young cross, but no one was there to follow up.

Although the home side had much more of the play in the second half, they failed to find a way through Wrexham's well-organised defence, marshalled well by Lawrence and Carey.

But on 63 minutes Carlos Edwards got round Young and squared the ball back for Armstrong to poke home from close range.

It was a rare venture into the Town half for the visitors, but their speed and direct play secured the goal that more or less clinched the game.

Groves threw on Hamilton and Mansaram in an attempt to salvage something from the game, with Onuora and Anderson being the men taken off.

Town appeared to go 4-3-3 and the formation paid off when Mansaram's cross from the left was converted by Jevons.

The goal had come with 17 minutes of the game remaining, but it proved to give the fans false hope.

In one final attempt during the three minutes of added on time, Jevons nodded Crowe's in-swinging corner onto the bar.

It was a brave effort by the Mariners towards the end, but the game had long since been lost.

Town have now registered just one win in 13 matches, and are without a win in nine.

They have collected just four points from a possible 24 and Groves doesn't need anyone to tell him that his job is seriously on the line.

This season has quickly developed into a relegation dogfight, and on this performance, there are some players who don't look up for the scrap.

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