The Grimsby Town FC


Question of the Week

Will Paul Hurst stay at Grimsby?



21/08 Rushden 2nd Half

By: Tony Butcher
Date: 22/08/2004

NO changes were made by either team at half time. The Rushden goalkeeper pulled his socks above his knees. Turley’s terrible tights were not a hit with the ladies.

Home > 2004-2005 Season > Reports > Rushden (a)

Nene Park

Rushden and Diamonds 1 Grimsby Town 0
21 Aug 2004, Coca Cola League 2

Rushden kicked off and kept the ball for a bit. Ramsden got clobbered, went off, came back, Town had the ball. That’s all you need to know about the first 5 minutes. Town this, Town that, Town didn’t shoot or score. Nearlys and almosts aren’t news in the new improved Town, now with added gel.

Now the champagne started to flow. Crowe uncorked the bottle, dispossessing easily in midfield with Reddy haring forward, just failing to reach the through ball. Turley wellied the ball upfield, Town got it back and attacked again, down the left, switched to the right, Reddy frightening the dormice, releasing Parkinson behind the full back. Parky perked up, pootered through a couple of tackles and laid the ball back to Fleming, about eight yards out on the centre right. Fleming scooped the ball across the face of goal, spinning, curling, drifting, dropping towards the top right hand corner. Turley scampered across, hurled himself along the line and plucked the ball from the sky. A good save rather than a great one, for Fleming had slightly miss-hit the shot.

All Town, not one moment of Rushden hope. Did they get across the half way line? Sestanovich doing his thing. With players free either side, he spun around three times, stopped, rolled the ball under his feet a couple of times, jinked, janked and hit a shot high and wide from about 20 yards. Try passing. From the goalkick Town got the ball and it was Pinault’s turn to wink and wave as his did a stylish gavotte through the left hand side of the Rushden penalty area. Eventually he flailed a shot from almost the same position as Sestanovich, and put the ball in the same spot in the stand. This was getting very, very frustrating. Town were irrepressible up to the edge of the Rushden penalty area, then all movement ceased; the tanks dug deep into the soil awaiting the infantry. Too many Town players wanted to score a great goal to, in effect, show off. Aesthetically pleasing but of little substance, all this badger baiting, all training ground poses.

Here we are again, play that funky music wide boy. Parkinson received a throw in near the corner flag on the Town right. He ran through the legs of the defender, along the touchline and cracked a low cross towards the near post. Crowe ran in and dinked the ball into the side netting from a couple of yards out. The plastic owls in the plastic stadium were perhaps more animated than the locals, though I think I heard one of their coaching staff cry out "Miss, Miss, can we have our ball back?"

Town were harmlessly passing the time in this grassland away from home, they were only dimly aware of a certain unease in the air. It was still 0-0: destruction does not always follow dominance. Parkinson? No, saved. Parky again? No, blocked. Wave upon wave crashing upon the Rushden rocks, but the little cockles and mussels were alive, alive oh. Surely now? Sestanovich deep inside the Town half made two cracking tackles near the touchline, scooping the ball back, feeding Pinault, who gorged on this little truffle. Stroked along the ground, Reddy spun and swished forward at speed. Onwards, upwards, acrosswards from left to right, drawing a couple of defenders and flicking them away like somnambulant woodlice. Inside the area to the right of goal, Reddy ignored the black and white stripes that were streaming forward and pinged a low shot towards the near post. Turley saved easily.

Anthony Williams
Justin Whittle
Simon Ramsden
Dean Gordon
John McDermott
Thomas Pinault
Terry Fleming
Jason Crowe
Andy Parkinsonyellow card
Michael Reddy
Ashley Sestanovich


Stacy Coldicott89 mins
Ronnie Bull81 mins
Darren Mansaram73 mins
Greg Young
Clint Marcelle


Jarnail Singh


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And then Rushden started to get the ball, they started to get inside the Town half, they started to attack. A deep cross tempted Williams away from his line. He flapped, some Town defenders flipped as the ball drifted out for a goal-kick. Another Rushden cross, a header, a save. Simple stuff: a warning? With about 20 minutes left they won a corner on their left after McDermott blocked away an attempted cross. You could feel it, that Town had slacked off, that Rushden had suddenly realised Town weren’t invincible conquerors, that Town had an Achilles heel. The one we’ve have always had: crosses and corners. The corner was floated into the box, it was half cleared, fell to a blond haired midfielder inside the box whose shot ricocheted off some red socks straight to an unmarked striker, a dozen or so yards out on the left. BRANIFF slapped a right footed shot over Williams in to the top left of the goal. Pathetic defending, sloppy. Yes, sloppy and Russ says he doesn’t do sloppy. His players do though.

That’s what you get for pretending the danger’s not real. What a surprise for us, a look of terminal shock in our eyes as the next 10 minutes flew by, and the ball flew towards Williams at alarmingly regular intervals. Oh, and Sestanovich was replaced by Mansaram on the restart. Sestanovich had rather deceived with his flattery, but had proved how important he was. His ineffectiveness highlighted the paucity of attacking flair elsewhere. Reddy and Parkinson rely on him to create: he feeds, they chew.

Poor old Dazzler had a stinking 20 minutes. His first four interventions were derisory, two miss-controls and two dreadful dozes at Rushden corners, which allowed crosses and shots. From the first, a couple of minutes after the goal, they played it short as Dazzling Dazz slept; in came a cross, out came Williams as a striker stooped in the centre of goal. Williams put off the striker by doing a Coynian star jump. The header seemed to brush the worried Welshman’s ankles and bumbled a foot or two wide of his near post. Another corner, another period of rest for Mansaram, another cross, more danger. Fizzed across the area, fly hacked back across the face of goal by a stretching white socked limb and one of the substitutes dived forward and steered a header over the bar. The goal was unmanned, he was unmarked: Town were becoming unhinged. Have you noticed? Rushden threatened from set pieces. Oops, spoke too soon. Mills was allowed to run forward 20 yards and crack a cracking shot towards the top right- hand corner. Williams parried the ball over the bar. Cracking. Rushden suddenly started to look like a capable football team, with Town feeling ever so sorry for themselves. "Miss, Miss, it’s not fair. Tell ‘em, Miss"

After 79 minutes Bull replaced McDermott, meaning Crowe went to the right side of middish field. Town had a bit of a resurgence towards the end, nothing like the first 70 minutes though. This was a more desperate, more direct form of association football. Crowe and Bull were pushed forward and there were many moments of hope, well, hope that a cross would come in. After a free flowing move down the centre Parkinson was sent scurrying behind the defence of the left, turned back, and laid a short pass to Bull, who whipped in a curling cross towards the penalty spot. Ah, fantastic... Pinault (I think, though some claim it to be Reddy) flew forward and smacked a glancing header towards the top left hand corner. Turley took off and clawed the ball away . A rather magnificent save. A rather fed up set of Town supporters. We keep seeing opposition keepers make great saves. The worst goalie we’ve seen so far is our own, and that is worrying.

Still Town pressed, off came Pinault with three minutes left and on came Coldicott. Ah, finally ridding the team of that stodgy French water carrier eh, and bringing on some guile and craftsmanship? Flicked up, over the top,Reddy pouncing, Reddy rolling, Reddy falling under a challenge a few yards out. Penalty claimed, no way, corner given. Whittle headed softly high and wide. Town again, Reddy, rocking and rolling, a cross cleared, Fleming knocked the ball back over the top. Reddy with his back to goal five yards out, Turley right behind him. The ball bounced between Reddy’s legs and off Turley for another corner. Perhaps this was when Whittle headed? Maybe. Maybe not. It was frantic, frenetic and failing. Town again, a Coldicott cross to Reddy, ten yards out in the centre, who flicked and glanced the ball a couple of feet wide of the right hand post. The last chance for salvation was Gordon curling a cross to the far post which drifted, drifted and crawled out of play a matter of inches from Crowe and Reddy.

Another three points bites the dust.

What a waste of time, what a waste of our money. It felt even worse than last season’s debacle, the gulf between the two teams was much greater this time, Town were eons superior for two thirds of the game. You can feel the bile rising from our guilty past: we’re getting a complex about this hollow club in Nowhereshire. The same emotions felt, the same words come flooding back. Arrogance, showing off, strolling, strutting, preening, posing. Take your pick. Town were like a nouveau riche wastrel jalloping down the beach in an open top sports car, wallet open, having a gay old time.

Angry? You bet. It’s Town.

Nicko’s Man of the Match

Mmm, difficult this one, for the flashes from the flashy ones wooed the unwary, but generally infuriated. Pinault passed, Gordon hoovered but, on balance, and after a lengthy debate by the Booker prize Jury, Andy Parkinson gets to have the metaphorical laurel crown resting upon his ears, simply for being a massive pest. Perseverance isn’t a parrot bought by my aunt, but Town’s number 10.

Official Warning

Mr J Singh. A little fussy at times, but at least he was consistent: the moans were minor. Nothing terrible, generally adequate, just about as good a gaoler as one could expect down in the deep dungeon. What’s the score? It has to have a six in it, 6.996. Oh. It had two.

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