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Grimsby 0 Macclesfield 0

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 26/12/2004

TOWN drew 0-0 with an organised Macclesfield side at a morgue-like Blundell Park this afternoon, in a match in which the Mariners struggled to break down an organised Macclesfield unit and stamp their authority on the game.

Grimsby came closest to scoring, hitting the bar on two occasions, but ultimately Town once more dropped points on the day the season reached the half way mark of 23 games.

Russell Slade changed his formation to match the Silkmen's five across midfield. Gordon and Pinault were controversially dropped as Slade switched to a 3-5-2 line-up.

Beanpole Rob Jones came in as the extra defender, and Ashley Sestanovich was recalled in a role playing behind the front two. New signing Martin Gritton came straight into the starting XI, partnering Parkinson up front.

Gritton had his first chance in the first minute of the game, but failed to get enough power on his header to trouble Macclesfield's Wilson in goal.

McDermott had two chances in the first few minutes in the first half. The veteran right back blasted his first wide from a good position, but forced a save from Wilson with his second chance, from which the 'keeper also saved Parkinson's follow-up.

Town failed to go close to scoring in the remainder of the first 45 minutes, the middle part of which Macclesfield had the better of, but without really coming close to scoring.

At the start of the second half McDemott once more found himself in a good position, but failed to hit the target from a promising opening.

Macclesfield had a couple of good chances early in the second period, the pick of which was a low save by Williams from Sheron, The Welshman also made a handful of other good saves to deny the Cheshire club.

The game could have gone either way in the second half, but Town came closest, hitting the woodwork twice. Substitute Michael Reddy's header glanced the crossbar from a Ronnie Bull cross with 10 minutes to go.

But in the final minute of injury time fate dealt the cruellest blow to Grimsby. A Jason Crowe blast hammered against the underside of the crossbar and bounced agonisingly the wrong side of the line. It would have been a fairy-tale ending but, as in many games this season, Town's luck deserted them in front of goal.

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